President Isaias Afwerki stressed that regional cooperation is not a matter of choice but necessity and that reforming and restructuring the African Union should be a priority task.
In the interview that was broadcast live on national media outlets on October 7, President Isaias elaborated on Eritrea’s perspectives on the role that Africa should play in the unfolding international world order as well as on the significance of reforming and restructuring the African Union.
The President underlined that the African Union should not repeat the failures of the OAU to rise up to the aspirations of its constituencies in the continent in the thirty years of operation since its formation in 1963.
In this spirit, the Government of Eritrea has recently sent messages to various African countries to express its views on this critical issue as well as to galvanize support for the creation of a conducive environment for concerted action, President Isaias stated.
Enhanced cooperation among member States and marshaling common resources evidently yield greater benefits; revitalization of the African Union should therefore be anchored on these precepts.
Pointing out that in the 21st century, the only continent that remains marginalized is Africa, President Isaias noted that it is perplexing to see a continent, that possesses 60% of the world’s resources and that has the potential to help others, depend on external assistance.
Pompous forums convened in various venues under different themes and labels have failed to produce meaningful and tangible results. Illegal migration and other economic malaises are, in fact, inexorably intertwined with this state of affairs.
Africa can only extricate itself from these trends that are fraught with breeding neo-colonial realities if the African Union and other regional institutions in the continent assume appropriate structures and mandates that promote the real aspirations of the African populations. The restructuring task must therefore be mapped out through collective endeavours.
President Isaias stated that the existing African Union structure is a carbon copy of the European Union; it is not in consonance with the realities of the continent. It is thus timely to restructure the African Union to ensure optimal alignment with the aspirations of the African populations and that is responsive to the changing international order.
Eritrea is naturally ready to play its modest part in this effort, President Isaias asserted.
In conclusion, President Isaias underscored the urgency of the task and the right and responsibility of every Member State to shoulder its obligations in this common endeavour.