‘Our Africa, Our Future’: African Union Begins Marking its 20th Anniversary

ADDIS ABABA – African Union has today launched an information campaign reflecting on its milestone and impact on the continent as part of the African Union 20th anniversary commemoration.

This year, the pan African bloc celebrates the 20th anniversary of the African Union, launched during the first Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the AU at the Durban Summit in 2002.

According to the AU, three summits were held in the lead-up to the official launch of the Union:

On 9 September 1999, the then Organization of African Unity or OAU signed the Sirte Declaration, establishing the Union.

The Declaration called for the creation of an organization that would accelerate integration on the continent and enable Africa to play a greater role in the global economy while addressing social, economic and political challenges with African solutions.

The 9th September is therefore celebrated as African Union Day.

The other two summits that AU sees as key in the realization of the Union are the 2000 Lomé Summit, which adopted the African Union’s Constitutive Act, and the 2001 Lusaka Summit that drew the roadmap for implementation of the AU.

The decision to re-launch Africa’s Pan-African organization was the outcome of a consensus by African leaders in order to realize Africa’s potential, said the union.

“There was a need to refocus attention from the fight for decolonization and apartheid, which had been the focus of the OAU, towards increased cooperation and integration of African states to drive Africa’s growth and economic development,” said the AU.

In the lead up to Africa Day, the African Union Commission is launching an information campaign dubbed the African Union at 20 (#AU20), with a slogan “Our Africa, Our Future”.

The campaign would reflect on the milestones and impact of the Organization in realizing its vision of “An Integrated, Prosperous and Peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the global arena”, under Agenda 2063

The campaign will roll out information, facts and figures to raise awareness of the various projects, programmes and initiatives undertaken across the continent during the last 20 years.

This campaign will tell the story of the AU’s past, present, and vision for the future, highlighting the various ways in which the Union works to promote the peace, unity and prosperity of African citizens.

It will also contribute to the goal of connecting the African Union to over one billion African citizens, and enhancing its voice in the global arena, as per the AU.