Wednesday, 27 August 2014

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia 2014- Two outgoing African ambassadors today bade farewell to the African Union after serving their terms as Permanent Representatives to the Union.
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Prof. Joseph Nsengimana, Ambassador of the Republic of Rwanda and Dr. Andrew Hama Mtetwa, Ambassador of the Republic of Zimbabwe paid their farewell courtesy calls on the Chairperson of the AU Commission Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma at the Union’s headquarters in Addis Ababa today. Prof Nsengimana expressed his and his government’s appreciation of the election of Dr Dlamini Zuma as the first woman Chairperson of the AU Commission and commended her for the support she has extended to him during his tenure as ambassador.

Dr Dlamini Zuma thanked Prof Nsengimana for his active participation and contributions at meetings of the Permanent Representatives Committee (PRC) and remarked on the cooperation that has been extended to the AU by the Rwandese government, especially the full support pledged by President Paul Kagame.

Description: Description: C:\Users\musabayanaw.AFRICANUNION\Pictures\27 Aug\zembabwe\zembabwe.JPGIn her meeting with Dr Andrew Mtetwa of Zimbabwe, Dr Dlamini Zuma expressed her appreciation for his active role within the structures of the AU. She wished Zimbabwe success as it leads the regional economic community SADC (Southern African Development Community). Zimbabwe assumed leadership of SADC at the regional bloc’s ordinary summit held in Victoria Falls earlier this month.

Ambassador Mtetwa, who announced that he has now retired from his country’s foreign service, commended the Chairperson for the work she has embarked on since her appointment. He also announced that he is likely to continue sharing his expertise in African development through teaching.

Both the ambassadors were presented with tokens of appreciation for the time they have spent in Addis Ababa, serving the interests of the continent.  The Chairperson wished the ambassadors success in their future endeavours, with the outgoing Rwandese ambassador declaring “I am African”, the slogan by which the AU seeks to promote African ownership of, and sense of belonging to the continental organisation.


Cotonou, Benin - August 21, 2014 - Dr. Nassirou Bako-Arifari, Minister for Foreign Affairs, African Integration, Francophonie and Benin Nationals Living Abroad, received on August 21 in his office at the Ministry, members of the African Union delegation on a working visit to Cotonou, Benin, as part of the awareness campaign of civil society in the election of the Second Assembly of the Economic, Social and Cultural Council (ECOSOCC) of the African Union (AU).
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During the audience, which was attended by top officials of the Ministry in charge  of African integration, promotion of civil society and African issues, Dr. Bako Arifari-emphasized the importance of the lead role being played by ECOSOCC in the education of the African population, emphasizing the need to focus on the youth and women in the integration process.

The Minister called on the specialized departments of his Ministry to do their utmost for the successful sensitization of all the components of Benin civil society, including the media. "ECOSOCC is our think tank," in this respect,” the minister said, emphasizing that "our stability depends on our ability to meet the expectations of our young people." Dr. Nassirou Bako-Arifari expressed satisfaction at the resumption of ECOSOCC activities and the willingness to educate the African civil society to ensure greater participation in the elections of the 2nd General Assembly. "I would do anything in my power to support you”, he added.

Outlining the objectives of the campaign, Mr. Jalel Chelba, Chief, Division of Civil Society in the Department of Civil Society and Diaspora of the Commission of the African Union (CIDO),  in his capacity as Leader of the AU delegation, composed of Mrs. Habiba Mejri Cheikh, Director of  AU Information and Communication Directorate and Ms Mpho Porquet, member of the  ECOSOCC Assembly, expressed the gratitude of the African Union for the efforts Benin continues to exert to consolidate the gains of the continental organization in the integration and development of the continent. Mr. Chelba also congratulated the Minister on his reappointment as head of Benin diplomacy, following a cabinet reshuffle.

The meeting to which all  Benin civil society organizations were invited took place on Friday, August 22, 2014, at 10:00 at the conference room of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, African Integration,  Francophonie and Benin Nationals Living Abroad.

On the same day in the Benin capital, Cotonou, the Third Sensitization Meeting of the countries of the West African region was held.

It is worth noting that this sensitization campaign, initiated by the Department of Citizenship and Diaspora of the AU Commission (CIDO) in accordance with the Executive Council decision (EX.CL/Dec.849 (XXV), adopted at the 23rd Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, kicked off on  12 August 2014 in Lusaka, Zambia and will continue until September, covering  the five regions of Africa.