Minister Shoniyin Meets With AU Delegation

Staff Report

A three-member delegation of the African Union (AU) has met with Acting Foreign Minister, Mr. B. Elias Shoniyin, to begin discussions on the domestication of AU’s “Agenda 2063” at the national level. Aiming to encourage discussion among all stakeholders, “Agenda 2063” is an approach to how the continent should effectively learn from the lessons of the past, build on the progress now underway and strategically exploit all possible opportunities available in the short, medium and long term, so as to ensure positive socioeconomic transformation  within the next 50 years. Simply put, “Agenda 2063” is “a global strategy to improve use of Africa’s resources for the benefit of all Africans”.

According to a Foreign Ministry release, the three-member delegation, who are on a technical support mission to Member States, were sent by the AU Commission. Their discussions with authorities of Member States will involve a series of consultative and information gathering activities culminating in a multi-stakeholders workshop later this month.  “Agenda 2063” sets out clear milestones and targets at national, regional and continental levels with greater emphasis at national level; hence the AU wants to ensure that these milestones and targets are embedded in national development plans.

During discussions with the head of the AU delegation, Dr. Ahmad Tijan Jallow, acting Foreign Minister Shoniyin said he was glad that the AU team is in the country to technically help Liberia domesticate the AU’s “Agenda 2063”. “We are glad that you have come to Liberia to help address some of the development issues in line with AU’s Agenda 2063,” Minister Shoniyin, who is deputy minister for foreign affairs, said.

He informed Dr. Jallow and his team that Liberia looks forward to aligning all of the AU’s development agenda with its national agenda; adding, “Only Africans know what their true problems are.” Acting   Foreign Minister Shoniyin assured Dr. Jallow of the Ministry’s full cooperation in order to ensure his mission’s success.

Responding, the AU visiting delegation’s head said, among items that would be discussed with Member States is the establishment of an African Center for Disease Control. He indicated that strengthening the health sector on the continent is one key lesson learned following the worst deadly Ebola outbreak in the history of the disease. Dr. Jallow, among other things, said, “Domestication of ‘Agenda 2063’ at national and regional levels is critical if Africa’s transformation is to become a reality.” He also called for better and more solidarity among and between African nations.

The African Union’s “Agenda 2063” was adopted at the 24th Ordinary Session AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia last January 2015.

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