KAMPALA - African Union (AU) ministers on Monday commenced a two-day special meeting that seeks to come up with resolutions for addressing issues affecting refugees, returnees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) on the continent.
Opening of the meeting, Uganda’s Prime Minister, Apollo Nsibambi, called on the delegates to come up with solutions to the problem otherwise peace and stability on the continent are under threat.
The summit is searching for the root causes and ways of preventing forced displacement as a long term strategy, and the establishment of effective and sustainable mechanisms to deal with natural disasters, climate change and food security.
The special summit which is jointly organised by the AU Secretariat and the government of Uganda is being held under the theme: “African Union addressing the challenge of forced displacement in Africa”.
“The AU has consistently argued the need to focus on the root causes of the crisis that lead to forced displacement, and recognise the efforts directed towards addressing the root causes,” said Julia Dolly Joiner, Commissioner for Political Affairs at the African Union Secretariat.
She further noted that, improvements in governance, rapid economic development, more appropriate food security strategies and a whole range of actions will continue to ensure that many of the root causes of forced displacement are addressed.
The summit is expected to endorse and sign the AU Convention on the Protection and Assistance to Internally Displaced Persons in Africa.
With close to 17 million, Africa has the largest number of refugees and IDPs in the world.