Sunday, October 2, 2011

Decisions adopted during the 17th African Union Summit

17th AU Summit, Malabo, Equotorial Giunea (Pix: AU)
MALABO, Equatorial Guinea, July 4, 2011/African Press Organization (APO)/ — African Union (AU) Heads of State and Government meeting at their 17th Ordinary Session in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, from 23 June to 1st July 2011, under the Theme: “‘Accelerating Youth Empowerment for Sustainable Development”, adopted the following Decisions.

On the theme “‘Accelerating of Youth empowerment for sustainable development”, the Assembly decided:
(i) that all Member States should advance the youth agenda and adopt policies and mechanisms towards the creation of safe, decent and competitive employment opportunities by accelerating the implementation of the Youth Decade Plan of Action (2009-2018) and the Ouagadougou 2004 Plan of Action on Employment Promotion and Poverty Alleviation;


(ii) that the Commission in collaboration with its partners should elaborate a Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) framework, addressing specifically the domains of Agriculture and ICT, while accelerating the implementation of the Youth Decade Plan of Action;
(iii) That Member States provide to the Commission adequate resources for the advancement of the Youth Agenda, including the funding of the Pan African Youth Union;

(iv) To organize on the margins of every June/July Summit a training programme for the Youth Volunteers
(v) That all trained Young Volunteers should be deployed as soon as possible after their training including placement in the AU organs and the Regional Economic Communities as part of capacity building for young professionals;

(vi) That the African Union Commission should lead the organization of a side event on “Accelerating youth empowerment for Sustainable Development” under the leadership of the Chairperson of the AU, during the United Nations High-Level Meeting on Youth in July 2011 at the UN Headquarters whose theme is “Cooperation towards Financing Youth Development and Empowerment in Africa”.

On alternative Sources of Financing the African Union, the Assembly recalled the dire financial situation of the Union caused by delays in honouring assessed contributions by Member States, and complexities of accessing partner funds. This underscores the need to identify additional sources of financing the activities of the Union.

The Heads of State expressed concerns over the growing reliance on partner funds to finance the continental integration and development agenda, while reiterating the imperative need for Member States to provide the AU with predictable, reliable and sustainable resources to enable it fulfil its mandate.

In this regard, the Assembly requested the Commission to actively pursue the effective implementation of the various decisions of the Assembly on alternative sources of financing the AU. They took note of the progress in the setting up of a High Level Panel of Eminent Personalities (the Panel) with a view to engaging with Member States and coming up with definitive proposals to this long standing issue as per the January 2011 Executive Council Decision.

Requesting the Commission to expedite the process of setting up the Panel and take all necessary measures to facilitate its work, the Assembly appealed to all Member States and the Regional Economic Communities (RECs) to provide all the necessary support to the Panel to ensure a successful outcome of the consultations. It requested the Panel to undertake the consultations in a timely manner and report to the next Ordinary Session of the Assembly through the Executive Council, in January 2012.

On Specialised Technical Committees, the Assembly decided that each STC should meet at the level of ministers and experts once every two years, except the STC on Finance, Monetary Affairs, Economic Planning and Integration, the STC on Gender and Women’s Empowerment and the STC on Defense and Security which shall meet once a year in ordinary session and an extra ordinary session if need be;

The Assembly requested the Commission in collaboration with the Permanent Representatives’ Committee (PRC) through its Sub-Committee on Administrative, Budgetary and Financial Matters to determine the financial implications of meetings of each STC; decided that the coordinating mechanism of the STCs shall be made up of the bureaus of the various STCs in order to ensure that the STCs take a global view of the policies, programmes and activities of the Union and authorised that it meets once every year and that the Chairpersons of the various STCs attend the sessions of the Executive Council.

They further decided that the Commission will be responsible for convening and servicing all the meetings of the STCs in order to ensure synergy with other organs and institutions and ultimately with the Executive Council, requesting the Commission to operationalize the STCs from January 2013 and that thereafter the sectoral ministerial conferences be abolished.

On the implementation of the Assembly Decisions on the International Criminal Court, the Assembly reiterated its commitment to fight impunity in conformity with the provisions of Article 4(h) of the Constitutive Act of the African Union.

It stressed the need to pursue all efforts and explore ways and means of ensuring that the request by the African Union (AU) to the United Nations (UN) Security Council to defer the proceedings initiated against President Bashir of The Sudan, in accordance with Article 16 of the Rome Statute of ICC on deferral of cases by the UN Security Council, be acted upon.

In this regard, the Assembly reiterated its request to the UN Security Council; and requested the African members of the UN Security Council to place the matter on its agenda of the Council.
It also stressed the need to pursue all efforts in ensuring that the request by the African Union (AU) to the UN Security Council to defer the investigations and prosecutions in relation to the 2008 post-election violence in Kenya under Article 16 of the Rome Statute to allow for a national mechanism to investigate and prosecute the cases under a reformed judiciary provided for in the new constitutional dispensation, in line with the principle of complementarity be accepted by the UN Security Council.

It reaffirmed that by receiving President Bashir, the Republic of Chad, Kenya, and Djibouti were discharging their obligations under Article 23 of the Constitutive Act of the African Union and Article 98 of the Rome Statute as well as acting in pursuit of peace and stability in their respective regions.

It expressed deep concerns at the manner in which the International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor is handling the situation in Libya which was referred to the ICC by the Security Council through Resolution 1973 (2011).

The Assembly noted that the warrant of arrest issued by the Pre-Trial Chamber concerning Colonel Qadhafi, seriously complicates the efforts aimed at finding a negotiated political solution to the crisis in Libya, which will also address, in a mutually-reinforcing way, issues relating to impunity and reconciliation. In this regard, the Assembly decided that AU Member States shall not cooperate in the execution of the arrest warrant, and requested the United Nations Security Council to activate the provisions of Article 16 of the Rome Statute with a view to deferring the ICC process on Libya, in the interest of Justice as well as peace in the country.

It requested the Group of African States Parties in New York and in the Hague to closely follow-up on the implementation of the Assembly’s Decisions on ICC.
It also requested the Commission in collaboration with the Permanent Representatives’ Committee, to reflect on how best Africa’s interests can be fully defended and protected in the international judicial system and to actively pursue the implementation of the Assembly’s Decisions on the African Court of Justice and Human and Peoples’ Rights so that it is empowered to try serious international crimes committed on African soil; Finally, the Commission was asked to follow-up on this matter and to report regularly on the implementation of the various Assembly decisions on ICC.

On the Implementation of the Roadmap and Global African Diaspora process, the Assembly recognised the progress report on the roadmap and the preparations for the Global African Diaspora summit as well as the efforts and progress made by the Republic of South Africa and the Commission to ensure the implementation of the roadmap.

It also requested them to continue their collaboration to ensure the successful planning and conduct of the Diaspora Summit; such efforts should include the continuation of regional consultative conferences, the revitalization of Diaspora Regional Networks in the various regions of the world where the African Diaspora population lives and feasibility studies on bankable projects.

The Assembly decided that the outcomes of the Technical Committee Meeting on the Diaspora be submitted for consideration to a Diaspora Ministerial Conference to be held on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, USA in September 2011 in preparation for the Global Diaspora Summit.
While reaffirming the decision that the Diaspora issue remains a standing agenda for Summit meetings the Assembly decided to convene the Global Diaspora Summit on 25 May 2012.

It called upon Member States, AU Partners and the Diaspora communities worldwide to support this agenda and facilitate the implementation of the roadmap and the Global Diaspora Summit.
On the Theme, Date and Venue of the Eighteenth Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union, the Assembly recalled the Decision Assembly/AU/Dec.347(XVI) adopted by the Sixteenth Ordinary Session of the Assembly in January 2011 on the theme of the January/February 2012 Summit which is: “Boosting Intra-African Trade”;

It endorsed the recommendation of the Executive Council regarding the necessity to have henceforth one theme per year and confirmed that the above-mentioned theme will be for the whole year of 2012 including for the celebrations of Africa Day on 25 May 2012.

It decided that the dates of the Eighteenth Ordinary Session of the Assembly which will hold in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, shall be the following:

i) Twenty-third Ordinary Session of the Permanent Representatives Committee: 23 and 24 January 2012;
ii) Twentieth Ordinary Session of the Executive Council: 26 and 27 January 2012;
iii) Eighteenth Ordinary Session of the Assembly: 29 and 30 January 2012

On the Activities of Peace and Security Council and the State of Peace and Security in Africa, the Assembly commended the efforts of both the Commission and the Regional Economic Communities/ Regional Mechanisms for Conflict Prevention, Management and Resolution (RECs/RMs), to finalize the operationalization of the African Peace and Security Architecture, and underscored the need to accelerate this process.

It commended the Southern African Development Community (SADC) for its efforts to facilitate the return to constitutional order in Madagascar on the basis of its “Roadmap for a way out of the crisis in Madagascar,” as endorsed by the SADC Extraordinary Summit held in Sandton, South Africa, on 11 and 12 June 2011.

It welcomed the completion of the implementation process of the 16 June 2010 Agreement on the Management of the Interim Period in the Comoros, and urged the Comorian stakeholders to persevere in their efforts to consolidate the gains made. It reaffirmed that Mayotte belongs to the Union of the Comoros and expressed its deep concern regarding the pursuit by France of its current policy, in particular the transformation of Mayotte into an overseas, province (Departement).

The Assembly welcomed the signing, on 9 June 2011, of the Kampala Accord between the President of the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) of Somalia, Mr. Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, and the Speaker of the Transitional Federal Parliament (TFP), Mr. Shariff Hassan Sheikh Aden, which seeks to end the current transitional period with deferral of elections for one year. It took note of the resignation of Prime Minister Mohamed Abdullahi Mohammed “Farmajo” and the decision of the TFG President to appoint Mr. Abdiweli Mohamed Ali as the new Prime Minister, who has since been endorsed by the TFP, and encouraged the speedy completion of the consultations for the formation of a new cabinet and its subsequent endorsement by the parliament.

The Assembly underlined that the expeditious implementation of the Kampala Accord will go a long way in consolidating the important military gains made on the ground by the TFG, with the support of AMISOM.
It expressed its appreciation to AMISOM personnel for its valuable contribution to the peace and reconciliation process in Somalia, and paid tribute to the Troop Contributing Countries, namely Uganda and Burundi.

It appealed to Member States that pledged troops to honor their commitments, as well as to the international community to lend the necessary support to AMISOM.
It reiterated the call to the United Nations Security Council to authorize the deployment of a UN peace keeping operation in Somalia and, in the meantime, to provide more adequate support to AMISOM.
It reiterated its concern at the continued impasse in the peace process between Eritrea and Ethiopia.
It reiterated its call on Djibouti and Eritrea to pursue, in good faith, the scrupulous implementation of the 6 June 2010 Agreement, concluded under the auspices of Qatar, in order to resolve their border dispute and consolidate the normalization of their relations, and requested the Commission to closely follow the situation and make every effort to facilitate progress.

The Assembly recalled the Solemn Declaration on Sudan adopted at its 16th Ordinary Session, following the successful holding of the self-determination referendum for Southern Sudan, the main pillar of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA).

It acknowledged the overwhelming choice for separation made by the people of Southern Sudan, and looks forward to welcoming the Republic of Southern Sudan as the newest member of the AU, immediately upon its independence on 9 July 2011.

It urged the Sudanese Parties to the CPA, in particular President Omar Hassan Al Bashir and First Vice-President Salva Kiir Mayardit, President of the Government of Southern Sudan (GoSS), to continue to demonstrate the commitment required to complete the implementation of the CPA and finalize the post-referendum negotiations, with the support of the AU High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP) and in the spirit of creating two viable States, mutually supportive and at peace with one another.

It welcomed the signing, in Addis Ababa, on 20 June 2011, by the Government of Sudan (GoS) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), of an Agreement on Temporary Arrangements for the Administration and Security of Abyei Area, under the facilitation of the AUHIP, which will enable security to be established and displaced persons to return to their homes in that district, as well as create conditions under which the Panel can make its recommendation on the final status of Abyei at a time to be agreed upon.
It endorsed the agreement and urged the parties to build on this breakthrough to resolve the pending issues in their negotiations.

The Assembly congratulated the Government of Ethiopia, in particular Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, for the key role it played in facilitating this breakthrough and for its readiness to provide troops for the Interim Security Force for Abyei (ISFA) without delay.

In this respect, it welcomed the adoption, on 27 June 2011, by the Security Council, of resolution 1990(2011), authorizing the deployment of the United Nations Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA), to facilitate the implementation of the Agreement, and stressed that this decision is an eloquent illustration of how best the AU and the UN can judiciously combine their respective comparative advantages to address peace and security challenges in Africa.

It further welcomed and endorsed the Framework Agreement on Political Partnership and Political and Security Arrangements in Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan, signed, under the facilitating of the AUHIP, in Addis Ababa, on 28 June 2011, by the GoS and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (North), as a decisive step towards consolidating peace, security and democracy in the Republic of Sudan.

It congratulated the parties on their commitment to the peaceful resolution of their differences and called upon them immediately to cease hostilities, permit humanitarian access, and allow the return of displaced persons to their homes, while stressing the need for renewed efforts to bring about lasting peace, justice and reconciliation in Darfur.

The Assembly noted with satisfaction the conclusion of the Doha political talks and the endorsement by the All-Darfur Stakeholders Conference held in Doha, from 27 to 31 May 2011, under the auspices of the Joint Chief Mediator and the Government of the State of Qatar, of the draft outcome document as a basis for the achievement of peace.

It looks forward to the conclusions of the negotiations between the GoS and the Liberation and Justice Movement (LJM), as well as of the discussions with the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM).
It expressed full support to the efforts being made by the AUHIP, with the support of UNAMID, to expedite the launching of the Darfur Political Process (DPP), in line with relevant AU decisions, as a way of addressing in a comprehensive and inclusive manner the challenges of peace, justice and reconciliation in Darfur.

The Assembly welcomed the encouraging progress made in consolidating peace and post-conflict reconstruction in Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Central African Republic (CAR), Liberia and Sierra Leone. It welcomed the continued efforts to implement the 15 January 2010 agreement between the Sudan and Chad and the impressive results achieved in this regard, especially with regard to securing the common border.

It also welcomed the holding of the tripartite Summit that brought together, in Khartoum, on 23 May 2011, the Presidents of the CAR, Sudan and Chad, as part of the efforts to enhance security and regional cooperation.
It welcomed the end of the post-election crisis in Côte d’Ivoire and the fact that the democratically elected President, Mr. Alassane Ouattara, now fully assumes full power. It noted with satisfaction the commitment of the new authorities to consolidate peace and promote reconciliation.

The Assembly welcomed the progress made in Guinea Bissau, in particular the adoption by the Government of the CPLP – ECOWAS Roadmap on the reform of the security sector, which responds to the objectives of the Tripoli Action Plan.

It encouraged the Guinea-Bissau authorities to continue their efforts, particularly in the fight against impunity and drug trafficking, the establishment of the rule of law and socio-economic recovery. It called on development partners to provide the support needed for the economic and social rehabilitation of Guinea.
It welcomed the positive evolution of the situation in Tunisia and the progress made in the transition, including the preparation for the election, of the Constituent Assembly, scheduled for 23 October 2011, and the establishment of a High Independent Body for Elections (HIIE), as well as the climate of freedom and democracy that now prevails in the country.

It noted the positive evolution of the situation in Egypt following the popular uprising which took place in January/February 2011, in particular the atmosphere of freedom and democracy that now prevails, the opening of the political space and the adoption of new legislation to facilitate the formation of political parties, the constitutional referendum of 19 March 2011, and the steps being taken to enable the Egyptian people to democratically choose their leaders and establish institutions that are truly representative and respectful of fundamental freedoms and human rights.

The Assembly reiterated its deep concern at the prevailing situation in Libya, as well as its conviction that only a political solution will make it possible to fulfill the legitimate aspirations of the Libyan people and preserve the unity and territorial integrity of the country. It reaffirmed the decision on the peaceful resolution of the Libyan crisis adopted at its Extraordinary Session held on 25 May 2011.

The Assembly further expressed profound appreciation of the AU to the Governments and peoples of Algeria, Egypt and Tunisia for the generosity with which they have welcomed hundreds of thousands of refugees, particularly African refugees, fleeing the conflict and NATO bombings in Libya.

On the reform of the United Nations (UN) Security Council, the Assembly took note of the recent developments in the intergovernmental negotiations and appreciated the efforts of the African Permanent Representatives to the UN, in promoting and defending the continent’s interest in the UN Security Council reform process.
It welcomed the growing support of Member states in the intergovernmental negotiations on the Security Council reform and for recognizing the compelling need to correct, first of all, the historical injustice done to the continent, which continues to be unrepresented in the permanent category and under-represented in the non-permanent category of the UN Security Council.

It further welcomed the growing recognition by Member states of the need in the on-going intergovernmental negotiations on UN Security Council reform, to treat Africa as a special case.
It welcomed the growing support the African common position continues to receive from Member States in the intergovernmental negotiations; underscored the need for Africa to continue to speak with one voice and cohesively on all issues, whether of substance or procedure or both related to the UN Security Council reform, in order to build on the gains so far achieved in the on-going intergovernmental negotiations and ensure that the interests of Africa continue to be maintained and safeguarded at all times.

It reaffirmed the Ezulwini Consensus and Sirte Declaration on the Reform of the UN Security Council containing the African common position.
It requested the African Permanent Representatives of the Committee of Ten, participating in the on-going intergovernmental negotiations on the Security Council reform, to work closely with other African Permanent Representatives to the United Nations and the African Permanent Representatives to the AU, and to continue to dialogue with and engage other member states and interest groups in the reform process, with a view to building more alliances in support of the African common position.

It also requested the Committee of Ten Heads of State and Government to continue to intensify its efforts in advocating, canvassing and promoting the African common position as well as endeavouring to reach out at the highest political levels for the purpose of garnering more support for the African common position and of galvanising the required political will to keep the reform process moving forward.

On the Hissene Habre case, the Assembly reiterated its decision in January 2011 confirming the mandate given to Senegal to try Hissene Habre on behalf of Africa and urged Senegal to carry out its legal responsibility in accordance with the United Nations Convention against Torture; the decision of the United Nations (UN) Committee against Torture as well as the said mandate, to put Hissene Habre on trial expeditiously or extradite him to any other country willing to put him on trial.

On the Transformation of the African Union Commission into the African Union Authority, the Assembly requested the Commission to convene a sixth meeting of government experts to consider the remaining legal instruments followed by a meeting of Ministers of Justice/Attorneys General or any other Ministers in charge of the matter of Member States during the second half of 2011 to consider and finalize the instruments related to the African Court of Justice and Human Rights and the Pan African Parliament for submission to the next ordinary session of the Assembly, through the Executive Council, for consideration.

On the establishment of the Pan-African University, the Assembly decided, based on the agreement between the North African region countries, to allocate the Pan African University Institute on Water and Energy Science, including climate change, to Algeria.

On the budget of the African Union, the Assembly delegated its power to adopt the 2012 budget to the Executive Council and authorised Executive Council to convene an extraordinary session in September 2011 to consider and adopt the said budget.

On the Coordination of the Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change (CAHOSCC), on Africa’s preparation towards the Seventeenth Conference of the Parties (COP 17), the Assembly urged CAHOSCC to convene a meeting to consider and take forward the Updated African Common Position on Climate Change to COP17/CMP7, which the African Ministerial Conference on Environment (AMCEN) will have considered and endorsed at its Extra-Ordinary Session to be held in September 2011.

It urged all the Member States to attend and participate in COP17/CMP7 in large numbers as well as individually and collectively, and provide support to the Presidency of South Africa in order to ensure the success of the conference.

It called on African negotiators to concentrate on completing the negotiations on climate finance in Durban and in that regard, build on the work of the Transitional Committee and other experts to ensure adequate resource flows, to address Africa’s climate change challenges.

On the Great Green Wall Initiative, the Assembly called on the Commission to play its coordinating role in mobilizing resources for the GGW and provide the necessary support to the Executing Agency of the GGW. It further requested the Commission and the Agency to monitor, evaluate the project and report regularly.
On the election of 1 member of the African Union Commission on International Law, the Assembly decided to nominate Mr. Bonaventure Makenga MPASI from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) for a one (1)-year term.

On the election of the five members of the African Union Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, the Assembly decided to appoint the following persons as members of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights:

No. Name Country Term of Office
1. Ms. Reine Adelaïde ALAPINI Benin 6-year term
2. Mr. Med S. K. KAGGWA Uganda 6-year term
3. Ms. Maya SAHLI FADEL Algeria 6-year term
4. Ms. Faith Pansy TLAKULA South Africa 6-year term
5. Mr. Pacifique MANIRAKIZA Burundi 4-year term

On the African Union (AU) decision-making process, lack of implementation of decisions, and the need to uphold and respect the integrity of the decisions of the AU Assembly by all Member States, the Assembly was deeply concerned by the deterioration of the decision-making processes within the AU, particularly efforts by some Member States to impose their will on the decision-making process.
It called on the Member States to respect the authority and integrity of the Chairperson of the Assembly and other AU institutions in carrying out their duties and mandates.

On the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Independence of African countries, the Assembly took note of the proposal of the Government of the Republic of Benin on the establishment of a Group of Experts in charge of ensuring the effective implementation of the principles spelt out in the Manifesto of the Fiftieth Anniversary of the Independence of African Countries.

On the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD-Rio+20): common position and strategies to face the Green Economy and an institutional framework for sustainable development”, the Assembly urged Member States to take note of the schedule of negotiations of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio + 20) and the preparatory meetings at regional and world levels, to ensure the active participation of African negotiators and experts and to ensure that Africa’s interests on the Green Economy issues within the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication, and institutional frameworks for sustainable development, are defined and taken into account.

It urgently invited the Member States to work for a Common African Position on the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio + 20), which will be finalized in Addis Ababa in October 2011.
It approved the proposal that Africa be represented by a spokesperson for the purpose of negotiating with one single voice at the international preparatory meetings for the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio + 20), and mandated the Republic of Congo to coordinate at the political level, in consultation with Member States, Africa’s preparation for Rio + 20.

On the Jacques Diouf Prize on food security, the Assembly approved the joint proposal by the Republic of Mali and the Republic of Malawi to create a “Jacques DIOUF Prize”, on the basis of the recommendations of the Twenty Sixth Session of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Regional Conference for Africa that was held in Luanda, Angola, from 4 to 7 July 2010.

It decided to award every two (2) years, the “Jacques DIOUF Prize” to a Member State or institution that has made an outstanding contribution towards achieving food security, in particular, through the improvement of small-scale farming and elimination of post-harvest losses in rural communities, agriculture innovation and environmental sustainability.
 
It invited Member States and all partners to support the proposed “Jacques Diouf Prize” through voluntary contributions and to ensure its financial and environmental sustainability.

On the support of a draft resolution at the 66th ordinary session of the General Assembly of the United Nations to ban genital mutilation in the world, the Assembly expressed deep concern at the continued practice of FGM in spite of numerous campaigns conducted over the last thirty years.

It urged all Member States of the African Union to provide strong support for efforts to adopt a draft resolution to ban female genital mutilation worldwide, which draft will be submitted to the Sixty-sixth session of the General Assembly of the United Nations.

On the establish an African Centre of Excellence in Information and Communication Technologies in Tunis, Republic of Tunisia, the Assembly recognised the importance of the role that the Centre will play in promoting ownership of ICTs by the Continent, developing African competence and raising the awareness of decision-makers on the major issues of the sector.

It requested the Commission, in collaboration with the Government of the Republic of Tunisia, to begin the necessary negotiations with the various partners of Africa in order to implement the project and submit a report thereon to the forthcoming session of the Assembly.

On the situation in Libya, the Assembly reaffirmed all earlier AU decisions on the situation in Libya and its conviction that only a political solution will make it possible to fulfill the legitimate aspirations of the Libyan people and preserve the unity and territorial integrity of the country.

In this respect, the Assembly stressed the continued relevance and validity of the AU Roadmap as articulated by the PSC at its 265th meeting.
It endorsed the proposals for a Framework Agreement on a Political Solution to the Crisis in Libya, as presented by the ad hoc Committee, within the context of the AU Roadmap and the relevant United Nations Security Council resolutions.

It requested the ad hoc Committee to submit these proposals to the Libyan parties, namely the Government of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya and the Transitional National Council (TNC) of Libya, and to engage them on that basis, including through the early convening of negotiations under the auspices of the AU and the United Nations, with the support of the League of Arab States, the Organization of the Islamic Conference and the European Union.

It urged the Libyan parties to demonstrate the required political will, place the supreme interest of their country and people above any other considerations, and extend the necessary cooperation to the High-Level ad hoc Committee.

It further urged international partners, in particular the United Nations Security Council and its members and relevant bilateral partners, to support the African initiative and the search for a political solution, as the best way of achieving the mutually-reinforcing objectives of peace, democracy, the rule of law and national reconciliation in Libya.

The Assembly underscored that the role of the AU is formally recognized by UN Security Council resolution 1973 (2011) and is fully consistent with the provisions of Chapter VIII of the UN Charter and the unique contribution that the ad hoc Committee can make for the resolution of the current crisis.
It requested the ad hoc Committee to report regularly to the PSC and to its 18th Ordinary Session on its efforts towards a political solution to the crisis in Libya.

On the NEPAD Heads of State and Government Orientation Committee (HSGOC), the Assembly reiterated the urgent need for Member States to adequately fund NPCA and its programmes to ensure the delivery of its mandate given the current financing constraints.

It took note with satisfaction of the substantial progress made in the integration of NEPAD into the structures and processes of the African Union pursuant to the Assembly Decision of the Fourteenth Ordinary Session of the Assembly and commended the Chairperson of the African Union Commission and the Chief Executive Officer of the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA) for working to strengthen the Agency’s institutional capacity to deliver on its mandate.

It accordingly requested the Commission and NPCA in conjunction with the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) and other partners to recommend appropriate mechanisms on domestic resource mobilization and present to the next HSGOC for consideration.

It welcomed the outcomes of the G8-Africa Partnership Summit held in Deauville, France in May 2011 relating to shared values and responsibilities in consolidating the continent’s good progress in peace and security, and economic growth with mutual accountability as the main pillars of the partnership.

It reaffirmed full support for the G20 Seoul Development Consensus on Shared Growth as the new development paradigm and its consistency with the NEPAD vision, and reiterated Africa’s call for adequate and effective representation in the G20 and the underlined desire to continuously and constructively engage the G20 High Level Infrastructure Panel on creative financing and investment options for the continent’s infrastructure projects, with the expressed position that the public sector remains the major player in infrastructure development.

It recognized the invaluable opportunity provided by upcoming global processes to convey the African voice and consensus on development policy issues including Climate Change and Aid Effectiveness.
At the end of the deliberations of the 17th AU Summit, the Heads of State and Government adopted the following Declaration:

DECLARATION ON CREATING EMPLOYMENT FOR ACCELERATING YOUTH DEVELOPMENT AND EMPOWERMENT
WE, the Heads of State and Government of the African Union, meeting at our Seventeenth Ordinary Session in Malabo, Republic of Equatorial Guinea, from 30 June to 1 July 2011;

DEEPLY CONCERNED about the rise in unemployment and under-employment in Africa, particularly among the youth and the serious threat they pose to social cohesion, political stability and the future socio-economic development prospects of our various countries;

RECALLING the African Youth Charter and the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Women in Africa;

ALSO RECALLING the Ouagadougou Declaration and Plan of Action on Employment Promotion and Poverty Alleviation; the AU Social Policy Framework; the AU Migration Policy Framework; the African Women Decade 2010-2020; the African Youth Decade Plan of Action, 2009-2018; and other related policy documents, as well as the Millennium Development Goals, all together aimed at improving the well-being of African people;

WELCOMING outcomes of the G20 Summits in London and Pittsburgh on strong, sustained and balanced global growth;

CONVINCED that employment promotion measures should be driven by interventions based upon solidarity and equality, transparency and accountability, and supported by the State, Private Sector, Employers and Trade Unions, and Civil Society Organizations to foster cohesion and social integration in African societies;

FURTHER CONVINCED that the promotion of productive youth employment is vital to youth empowerment;

Hereby COMMIT to the following:

1. REAFFIRM individually and collectively, our previous commitments aimed at accelerating job creation, reduction of poverty, social protection for our people and the social development of Africa. In this regard, we re-dedicate ourselves and commit our countries to accelerate efforts to reduce unemployment and under-employment of Africa’s Youth and Women and thereby attain all MDGs by 2015;

2. REDUCE Youth and Women unemployment by at least two percent annually over the next five years as contained in the Youth Decade Plan of Action 2009-2018;

3. MAINTAIN, extend and harmonize Labour Market Information Systems in support of employment policy formulation, implementation and evaluation;

4. IMPROVE and increase responsiveness of the education and training systems to current and future labour market needs in order to address the pervasive and structural skills mismatch;

5. PROVIDE STEWARDSHIP as national Governments and achieve policy coherence in National and Regional Certification Frameworks for Education and Vocational Training, as well as the development of integrated and cross-sectoral National and Regional Youth Employment Action Plans;

6. ACCELERATE appropriate social protection coverage expansion for the youth, women, informal economy and rural workers and members of their families, in order to reduce poverty and vulnerability;

7. CALLS on Member States which have not yet done so to sign, and ratify the African youth Charter;

8. REQUEST the African Union Commission to work with the African Development Bank (AfDB), the RECs and international partners, on a comprehensive youth employment pact, with mechanisms that will ensure its implementability at national level through strong ownership by the key Line Ministries, Employers and Trade union organisations, women and youth organisations and the Private Sector, with clear Monitoring and Evaluation system;

9. REQUEST the Commission, in close collaboration with the AfDB, to advocate for effective implementation of the G20 commitments made on labour and social protection during the London and Pittsburgh Summits to the benefit of African countries;

10. URGE the Commission, in close collaboration with the AfDB, to prepare and submit to the next Ordinary Session of the Assembly, the modalities for funding of the Plan of Action on Employment 
Promotion and Poverty Alleviation

11. REQUEST the Commission to annually report to this Assembly on progress made in the implementation of this Declaration

SOLEMN DECLARATION OF THE ASSEMBLY OF THE UNION ON SUDAN
We, the Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU), meeting at our 17th Ordinary Session in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, from 30 June to 1 July 2011, reviewed the situation in Sudan. Our deliberations were informed by the progress that the Sudanese parties continue to make in their quest for lasting peace, justice and reconciliation in their country, in spite of the many challenges confronting them.

We reiterate our appreciation to the people of Sudan, under the leadership of President Omar Hassan Al Bashir and First Vice-President and President of the Government of Southern Sudan (GoSS), Salva Kiir Mayardit, for having successfully conducted the self-determination referendum of January 2011 for Southern Sudan, the main pillar of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA). 

In so doing, the people and leaders of Sudan have, once again, demonstrated their capacity, with genuine support from the international community, to address the myriad of challenges confronting them. We commend President Al Bashir for having promptly accepted the results of the referendum, in keeping with the undertaking that he made to respect the will of the people of Southern Sudan, whatever their choice is.

As we look forward to welcoming Southern Sudan as the newest Member State of the African Union, immediately upon its independence on 9 July 2011, We would like to commend the people of northern Sudan, who have taken the unprecedented and generous step of accepting self-determination for their brethren. We emphasize that northern and southern Sudan are equally African nations.

We note with appreciation that our present Summit coincides with further progress in the resolution of the pending issues in the implementation process of the CPA. In this respect, we welcome the signing, in Addis Ababa, on 20 June 2011, by the Government of Sudan (GoS) and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (SPLM), of an Agreement on Temporary Arrangements for the Administration and Security of Abyei Area, under the facilitation of the AU High-Level Implementation Panel (AUHIP). This Agreement will enable security to be established and displaced persons to return to their homes in that district, as well as create conditions under which the Panel can make its recommendation on the final status of Abyei at a time to be agreed upon. We commend the Government of Ethiopia for its invaluable contribution to the conclusion of this Agreement and for its decision to deploy a force, under a UN mandate, to facilitate its implementation.

We hail the Framework Agreement on Political Partnership and Political and Security Arrangements in Blue Nile and Southern Kordofan, signed, under the facilitation of the AUHIP, in Addis Ababa, on 28 June 2011, by the Government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement (North), as a decisive step towards consolidating peace, security and democracy in the Republic of Sudan. We congratulate the parties on their commitment to the peaceful resolution of their differences and call upon them immediately to cease hostilities, allow humanitarian access, and facilitate the return of displaced persons to their homes.

We are confident that the Sudanese Parties to the CPA will continue to demonstrate the commitment required to complete the implementation of the CPA and finalize the post-referendum negotiations, with the support of the AUHIP and in the spirit of creating two viable states, mutually supportive and at peace with one another.

We stress the need for renewed efforts to settle in a peaceful and comprehensive manner, the conflict in Darfur: the people of Darfur have suffered too much and for too long, and a lasting solution must be found for their predicament. In this respect, We note with satisfaction the conclusion of the Doha political talks and the endorsement by the All Darfur Stakeholders Conference held in Doha, from 27 to 31 May 2011, under the auspices of the Joint Chief Mediator and the Government of the State of Qatar, of the draft outcome document, which provides a basis for the achievement of peace.

Aware of the exceptional circumstances that the Sudan is currently going through, We pledge, once again, our continued support to its efforts to decisively deal with the challenges facing it.

We strongly call on our partners within the international community to extend all the supports required to enable Sudan successfully complete the processes it is engaged in. In particular, We, once again, urge:
i) the United Nations Security Council to positively respond to the AU’s request for the deferral of the process initiated by the International Criminal Court (ICC), in line with Article 16 of the Rome Statute. In this respect, We request the African members of the Security Council, working closely with the Commission, to speedily table a draft resolution for consideration by this organ;

ii) the complete normalization of relations between the international community and Sudan, as well as speedy steps for the cancellation of Sudan’s debt, to ensure that its people can enjoy peace, dignity, democracy and development;

We express our support to the Doha Framework Document, and call upon all our partners and the other members of the international community to fully support it.

We urge all the armed movements in Darfur that have not yet done so, to, wholeheartedly and without any further delay, join the peace efforts. We request the Peace and Security Council to consider taking measures against armed movements refusing to join the peace process, and urge our partners, including the UN Security Council, to support such measures.

We reiterate our full support to the early launching of the Darfur Political Process led by the AUHIP and UNAMID, so as to achieve a comprehensive and inclusive peace in Darfur, and express our appreciation to the commendable work being done on the ground by UNAMID.

We commit the AU and engage the international community as a whole to continue to assist the peoples of Sudan as they open a new chapter in their history.

The Summit also adopted the following Resolution:

RESOLUTION ON THE LIFTING OF THE ECONOMIC AND TRADE EMBARGO IMPOSED ON THE REPUBLIC OF CUBA BY THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

We, the Heads of State and Government of the African Union meeting in our Seventeenth Ordinary Session in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, from 30 June to 1 July 2011;

1. RECALL our Resolution Assembly/AU/Res.1(XV) adopted by our Assembly at its 15th Ordinary Session held in Kampala, Uganda, on 27 July 2010, and in particular, the call made to the Government of the United States of America to lift the long-standing and unjustifiable economic and trade embargo imposed on the Republic of Cuba, and thus enable it to enjoy all the legitimate prospects for its sustained development;

2. REITERATE our call and once again INVITE the United States of America to lift the long-standing and unjustifiable sanctions imposed on the Republic of Cuba.

SOURCE: African Union Commission (AUC)

No comments:

Post a Comment

The views expressed in this section are the authors' own. It does not represent The North Bank Evening Standard (TNBES)'s editorial policy. Also, TNBES is not responsible for content on external links.

Gadget

This content is not yet available over encrypted connections.