Addis Ababa February 4/2022/ENA/ Holding of African Union (AU) Summit physically in Addis Ababa is a great opportunity to African leaders to discuss on the various challenges of the continent, Policy and Advocacy Consultant, African Union Octavio Diogo said.
After a two year of interruption due to COVID-19 pandemic, member states of the African Union (AU) are holding their Summit in Addis Ababa.
The 40th ordinary session of AU Executive Council was held for the past two days here in Addis Ababa to propose various agenda items to the AU Summit for further discussion.
Talked to ENA, Policy and Advocacy Consultant at the AU, Octavio Diogo said having this year’s summit physically in Addis Ababa demonstrates the fact that Africa is committed to fight against COVID-19.
Despite challenges of the pandemic during the ongoing AU sessions, he said “I know great decision has been taken to fight COVID-19.”
“This is another proof that African can do better. We can go beyond what we are able to do and to overcome challenges facing the continent; whether it is economic crisis, political crisis or health crisis; Africa can go beyond personal interest and do some things together,” Diogo noted.
Moreover, he stated that the issue of peace and security is among the current challenges across the continent that should be given a great deal of attention by the African leaders during upcoming summit.
Diogo elaborated that African leaders during this summit should prioritize on job creation in agriculture, health system and other sectors to help transform the economy in the continent.
“This can actually help for Africa economic transformation and economic recoveries,” he underscored.
Africa’s large and fast-growing youth population is considered as one of its utmost assets, with a pivotal role to play in shaping the development of the continent and maintaining peace and stability, the consultant added.
Yet, young Africans face numerous challenges that is affecting their livelihoods and make it difficult for them to thrive, Diogo said.
The African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) has what it takes to tackle these challenges by creating more jobs and entrepreneurship opportunities for young men and women.
“AfCFTA has a huge potential to create enormous jobs opportunity. At the current, African needs 15 million jobs every year to be created for young people to be at peace on the continent,” he underlined.
“If we create more jobs to the young people; there will be less of migration to Europe, there will be less political challenge on the continent as well as there will be more tax collection so that African countries become richer and provide more social welfare for everyone.”
The consultant stressed the need for African leaders to emphasis on ways to transform the agriculture sector and enhance productivities with a view to ensuring food security in the continent.