Founding Fathers of African Union

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Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, the first prime minister (1957-1960) and president (1960-1966) of the Republic of Ghana, was the leader of the first sub-Saharan African nation to gain its independence.  He subsequently became a leading figure in the campaign for the United States of Africa. He advocated for Pan Africanism and played a leading role in the establishment of the OAU in 1963 in Addis Ababa.

H.E Jomo Kenyatta was a leader in the Kenyan independence
movement  known as the Mau Mau Movement,
a strong supporter of a Kenyan government controlled by native Africans, and
the nation’s first prime minister as well as its first president. He is one of
the founders of the OAU in 1963.  He
helped organize the fifth Pan-African Congress, chaired by W.E.B. Du Bois, to encourage
cooperation between black Africans under white rule. In this time, he adopted
the name Jomo, which meant Burning Spear. In these years, Jomo Kenyatta was
really born as a major political figure.

H.E Gamal Abdel Nasser Hussein (15 January 1918 – 28
September 1970) was an Egyptian politician who served as the second president
of Egypt from 1954 until his death in 1970. Nasser led the 1952 overthrow of
the monarchy. He became president of Egypt in 1956. He played a prominent role
in the establishment of the OAU and advocated for African Unity and Pan
Africanism.

H.E Léopold Sédar Senghor (9 October 1906 – 20 December
2001) was a Senegalese poet, politician and cultural theorist who, for two
decades, served as the first president of Senegal (1960–80). Ideologically an
African socialist, he was the major theoretician of Négritude. Senghor was also
the founder of the Senegalese Democratic Bloc party. Senghor was the first
African elected as a member of the Académie française. He won the 1985 International
Nonino Prize in Italy. He is regarded by many as one of the most important
African intellectuals of the 20th century and founder of the OAU.

H.E Apollo Milton Obote (28 December 1925 – 10 October
2005) was a Ugandan political leader who led Uganda to independence from
British colonial rule in 1962. Following the nation’s independence, he served
as prime minister of Uganda from 1962 to 1966 and the second president of
Uganda from 1966 to 1971, then again from 1980 to 1985. He was overthrown in a
coup d’état 1971, but was re-elected in 1980 a year after Amin’s 1979
overthrow. His second period of rule ended after a long and bloody conflict
known as the Ugandan Bush War, during which he was overthrown a second time by
another coup d’état in 1985, prompting him to live the rest of his life in
exile.

H.E Ahmed Ben Bella was an Algerian politician, soldier,
and socialist revolutionary who served as the first President of Algeria from
1963 to 1965. Ahmed Ben Bella, was the principal leader of the Algerian War of
Independence against France, the first prime minister (1962–63) and first
elected president.

H.E Julius Kambarage Nyerere (13 April 1922 – 14 October
1999) was a Tanzanian anti-colonial activist, politician, and political
theorist.He governed Tanganyika as Prime Minister from 1961 to 1962 and then as
President from 1963 to 1964, after which he led its successor state, Tanzania,
as President from 1964 to 1985. He was a founding member and chair of the
Tanganyika African National Union (TANU) party, and of its successor Chama Cha
Mapinduzi, from 1954 to 1990. Ideologically an African nationalist and African
socialist, he promoted a political philosophy known as Ujamaa.

 H.E Abubakar
Tefewa Belewa (December 1912 – 15 January 1966) was a Nigerian politician who
served as the first and only Prime Minister of Nigeria. He played important
roles in the continent’s formative indigenous rule. He was an important leader
in the formation of the Organization of African Unity and creating a
cooperative relationship with French speaking African countries.

H.E Ahmed Sékou Touré (January 9, 1922 – March 6, 1984)
was a Guinean political leader and African statesman who became the first
president of Guinea, serving from 1958 until his death in 1984. Touré was among
the primary Guinean nationalists involved in gaining independence of the
country from France.

General Ibrahim Abboud (26 October 1900 ­­- 8 September
1983) was a Sudanese political figure who served as the head of state of Sudan
between 1958 and 1964 and as president of Sudan in 1964; however, he soon
resigned, ending Sudan’s first period of military rule. A career soldier,
Abboud served in World War II in Egypt and Iraq In 1949, Abboud became the
deputy Commander in Chief of the Sudanese military. Upon independence, Abboud
became the Commander in Chief of the Military of Sudan.

Haile Selassie, original name, Tafari Makonnen was
Emperor of Ethiopia (1930 to 1974). He brought Ethiopia into the League of
Nations and United Nations and made Addis Ababa the major centre for the
Organization of African Unity. 

When Italy invaded Ethiopia in 1935, Haile Selassie led
the resistance, but in May 1936 he was forced into exile. He appealed for help
from the League of Nations in a memorable speech that he delivered to that body
in Geneva on June 30, 1936.

Haile Selassie played a very important role in the
establishment of the Organization of African Unity in 1963.

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