Participants of Tana forum in Ethiopia urge renewed Afro-Arab unity

Participants in the 7th Tana High-Level Forum on Security in Africa which commenced on Saturday in the northern Ethiopia city of Bahir Dar urged renewed Afro-Arab unity to overcome Africa’s numerous challenges.

The remarks were made by Samia Nkrumah, daughter of Ghana’s first post-colonial leader, the late Kwame Nkrumah.

Kwame Nkrumah, a prominent Pan-Africanism advocate in the 1950 and 1960s, was a close ally of late Egyptian President Gamal Abdel-Nasser who advocated that Pan-Africanism and Pan-Arabism was mutually inclusive.

Samia Nkrumah said her father represented a vision of African dignity and self-reliance which called for total liberation and unification of the continent including North African nations.

“Nasser and Nkrumah exchanged political notes and worked closely for African political unification and anti-colonialism struggles” she further said.

Kgalema Motlanthe, former President of South Africa on his part said the efforts to end apartheid in South Africa was partly a product of Pan-African activism and that this success should be complemented by inspiring today’s youth to work together for Afro-Arab unity and the unity of the whole African continent.

He called for a free- visa system across the continent to strengthen Afro-Arab unity and in general African unity.

“The Arab-Africa leaders summit which started during Nasser’s time and was continued by the late Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi need to be revived if Afro-Arab unity is to become a reality,” he further said.

The Tana Forum is an independent initiative that seeks to provide an informal platform for African Heads of State and Government to engage in open and frank discussions with a wide spectrum of non-state stakeholders on the most pressing peace and security issues confronting the continent.

Around 250 participants are expected to attend the 2018 edition of Tana Forum, including current and former Heads of State and Government, high-ranking government officials, experts in peace and security, members of academia, youth representatives and the media.

The forum is held from April 21-22 in Bahir Dar city, Ethiopia.