26th AU Summit comes to a close as tribute is paid to efforts against Ebola

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The closing ceremony of the 26th Ordinary session of the Assembly of the African Union on Sunday 31st January also witnessed the appreciation ceremony for the stakeholders who supported the African Union’s intervention in the Ebola epidemic.

AUC Chairperson Dr Dlamini-Zuma appreciated and acknowledged the African heroes against Ebola and formally closed the AU Support to the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa (ASEOWA) mission.

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She then appealed to Heads of State and government to work together to establish the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) and also expand the Africa Risk Capacity to respond to outbreaks.

In his remarks, the newly elected AU Chairperson, President Idriss Deby appreciated the environment and atmosphere of the Summit which was peaceful and also thanked the Assembly for their recommendations in respect of the fight against terrorism in Africa.

He appealed to all Member States to take seriously, issues which undermine the development of Africa.

Dialogue is the key, he said.

“We cannot tolerate violence which kills thousands of Africans and leaves them displaced, let us all be vigilant and listen to the cries of our people,” he added.

The Chairperson underscored the absolute need to conclude the reforms of the structure of the AU Commission, to facilitate the efforts of the AU in line with the theme of the Summit 2016, i.e. African Year of Human Rights, with particular focus on the rights of women.

“In the course of my tenure, I will be concrete and dedicated to the AU,” the Chairperson pledged.

On the side lines of the 26th AU Summit a luncheon was hosted in honour of the efforts against Ebola.

A variety of traditional African dishes and musical entertainment were featured during the luncheon which was attended by Heads of State and Government, senior government officials, AUC staff, partners and companies that contributed to the African Union Support to the Ebola Outbreak in West Africa (ASEOWA).

All invited guests who graced the occasion converged together to recognise and acknowledge the role played by different stakeholders, including the governments and people of Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone; AU Member states who made financial and other contributions, and seconded health workers; the ASEOWA health workers who risked their lives in solidarity to defeat the epidemic, as well as the African private sector.

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