The 28th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council opens in Addis Ababa

28th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council

The Executive Council officially opened its 28th Ordinary Session on Wednesday at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The meeting of the Executive Council brought together all the Ministers of the 54 African Union Member States as well as AU officials.

The ceremony included among others the speech by the Chairperson of the Executive Council, Simbarashe Mumbengegwi who is also the Foreign Affairs Minister of the Republic of Zimbabwe.

In his speech, he began by thanking Ethiopia for “the usual welcome and the generous hospitality” he was accorded upon his arrival in Addis Ababa.

He stated the purpose of the Ordinary Session which will be held on Wednesday and Thursday.

Some of the items the council will be deliberating on include receiving and considering reports from the Chair of the AU Commission, the Permanent Representative Committee and those from the Ministerial Committees.

There shall also be consideration of the revised budget for 2016 as well as the report on the African Candidatures to the international systems.

The objective of the Executive Council is to prepare the agenda of the AU Summit with appropriate recommendations for consideration by the Heads of State scheduled to take place from 30-31 January 2016.

In her opening remarks the AU Commission Chairperson Dr Dlamini Zuma stated that the Agenda 2063 belongs to Africans and not the AU.

12592746_988410754541797_1214248755008382515_n

She added that the Agenda 2063 belongs to the artists, songwriters, poets, writers, praise-singers, dancers, sculptors, filmmakers and cultural workers.

“When they compose songs, poems, plays about Agenda 20163, we know that indeed our renaissance has started,” she added.

“The Agenda 2063 belongs to the youth whose energy, daring and creativity force us to question the conventional truths about our continent,” said Dr Zuma.

She urged the leaders to strengthen the initiatives aimed at the different sectors mentioned.

Also speaking at the event was the UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary at the ECA Carlos Lopes who urged Africa to develop fast a “vaccine” that will rid the continent of its damage.

He equated the “virus” that needs a “vaccine” to terror groups that have had viral effects all over the continent.

“The good news is that viral infections in humans provoke an immune response that usually eliminates the infecting virus,” he said.

The various leaders present at the opening of this session then gathered outside the Nelson Mandela Plenary Hall for a group photo.