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18 January 2017

Africa Leaders Resolve To Tighten Continental Security

By Maxwell Ofori, Flagstaff House, Accra
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, together with heads of state and governments from 30 other African countries, has resolved to develop joint border patrols in the fight against Boko Haram, a terrorist organisation in Nigeria.

To ensure that the quest of the leaders materialised, the government of France has also pledged to continue supporting the operationalisation of the Africa Standby Force.

This was contained in a communiqué issued on Saturday, January 14, 2017, at the end of the 27th Africa-France Summit held in Bamako, Mali.

However, the heads of state, at the summit, welcomed a decision of the African Union to find a sustainable financing mechanism for the Peace Fund, in a move to provide African peacekeeping operations with sustainable and predictable sources of funding.

They also welcomed the European Union’s contribution to the financing of these operations, and recalled the need to diversify international support.

At the summit, according to the communiqué, there were calls for an urgent reform in the United Nations and in its Security Council, through the enlargement of its membership in both categories with a greater African presence, especially, amongst its permanent members, so as to make the Council more representative of today’s world.

In other to achieve that, the heads of state and governments emphasised the important role of the African peace and security architecture in preventing, managing and settling conflicts, and, thus, called for more support.

Meanwhile, the heads of state also committed themselves towards ensuring that economic growth in their respective countries would lead to a more “inclusive economy”, which will create jobs for the youth in the coming years.

It stated that the heads of state agreed to the realisation of the commitment within the framework of the International Sustainable Development Agenda – the Addis Ababa Action Agenda on Financing for Development, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and the African Union’s Agenda 2063.

To this end, the Heads of State and Governments indicated that education and vocational training would be high priorities, as these will improve “human development and the integration of young Africans in the labour market.”

They, therefore, agreed to strengthen the management of education systems on the continent, by focusing on quality, particularly, by putting in place efficient training and assessment policies, as well promoting top-quality vocational training.

An appeal was made to ‘international partners’ to increase their support for the sectors of education and vocational training in Africa, and also for consideration to be given to modern, accessible and vocational content, which meet the needs of the labour market.

President Akufo-Addo was accompanied by the 1st Lady, Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo, Minister-designate for Foreign Affairs Shirley Ayorkor Botchway; Minister-designate for National Security, Albert Kan Dapaah; acting Secretary to the President, Nana Bediatuo Asante; acting Deputy Chief of Staff, Francis Asenso Boakye; acting Director of State Protocol, Ambassador Hassan Ahmed, and acting Director of Communications, Eugene Arhin.

Source:The Chronicle

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