The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Dr. Moussa Faki Mahamat, has called for a new approach to resolve peace and security challenges in Africa.Mahamat made the call in his remarks to open the 31st ordinary session of the AU Executive Council in Addis Ababa on Friday.
The meeting of the Executive Council of the African Union (comprising foreign ministers of member states) precedes the AU summit, which is slated for Monday 3rd July in Addis Ababa, and on its agenda are the issues of peace and security, refugee crises, social development, health, education, tourism and other issues,
Mahamat said new forms of violence continue to emerge in different parts of the continent and traditional ways of resolving them remain ineffective.
“The first and foremost question is how to realize peace and security. Immediately after taking office, I devoted my first trips to areas where member states continue to face the scourges of wars and terrorism: Somalia, South Sudan, Sahel, Lake Chad basin.
“In all these regions, I have come to a double conclusion: the first concern is the urgency for Africa to take charge of its own need for peace and security.”
He said no violent crisis in Africa will be resolved by arms.
“Dialogue, reconciliation and the search for consensual solutions is the only voice for peace.”
The AU summit will be held 3rd to 4th July under the theme: “Harnessing the Demographic Dividend through Investments in Youth.”
The AU Commission chairperson in his statement, opening the Executive Council meeting, said the empowerment of women and youths is an urgent need in order to make progress in Africa.
“The expectations of youths are immense and urgent. African youths want results. They are thirsty for concrete actions.”
“In all the countries I have just visited, the plaintive fears of women and young people are the most poignant. These are the social strata with the most pressing demands. Our foundations cannot ignore or minimize such pressing demands. We must make decisions that translate this urgent social need into concrete action,” Mahamat added.
The AU Assembly meeting on Monday at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa is expected to draw heads of state and government from all 55 member states.