[Editorial] African nations should walk the talk

African heads of state are again meeting in Addis Ababa for this year’s first summit.

African heads of state are again meeting in Addis Ababa for this year’s first summit.

A number of events are lined up for the meeting, but two of them will stand out from the rest; the election of the new chair of the African Union and recommendations for reforms suggested by President Paul Kagame and his team of eminent personalities.

When the heads of state last met in Kigali last year, they failed to come up with an acceptable candidate to head the union. It is hoped that now the issue will be resolved so that the union can deal with more pressing matters, and God knows they are plenty.

One of the most important is the issue of funding which was adopted by the Kigali Summit. In order to be self sustaining and wean off donor support, each country was supposed to impose a 0.2 percent levy on imports to fund the organization.

But to date, the ghosts that continue to haunt Africa are still present. Six months down the road, many countries are yet to make a decision and are quick to come up with excuses.

What makes it so difficult to institute legislation where it is needed in order for African nations to fulfill their obligations? Where is the dignity of continuing to depend on handouts that has been the bane of many African countries?

This was a time for African nations to show their seriousness and stop being the laughing stock of many. Otherwise, there could be fear that even the recommendations by President Kagame’s team might fall on deaf ears.

 

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