General News of Saturday, 14 March 2015
Professor Atukwei Okai, the Secretary General, Pan African Writers Association (PAWA), has appealed to African leaders to implement African Union (AU) protocols that they had ratified.
The implementation of the protocols, he said, would not only help in the development of the individual countries, but the continent as a whole as well as its human resource.
Prof Atukwei Okai said this on Friday during the launch of the “My African Union, My Voice” campaign aimed at raising public awareness of the objectives of the African Union and also promote active citizen participation in the implementation of its protocols, conventions and policy decisions.
The campaign in Ghana would be spearheaded by the Institute of Democratic Governance in collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration.
He expressed concern about Africans who endanger their lives by crossing the dreadful Sahara Desert and seas to get to Europe in search of greener pastures, and urged the AU to do all within its power to put a stop to it.
The Zimbabwean High Commissioner to Ghana, Mrs Pavelyn Tendai Musaka congratulated IDEG and Ghana for spearheading the initiative to educate Ghanaians on the protocols, conventions and policy decisions of the AU.
She noted that Africa had a lot to offer its citizens, in terms of good weather, and natural resources and called on leaders to let Africans enjoy them.
Mrs Musaka, who is also the Dean of the Diplomatic Corps in Ghana, urged the country to continue with its leadership role on the continent as it did in being the first to attain independence on the continent.
In a message read on her behalf, Ms Hannah Tetteh, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, praised IDEG for being a good partner in helping the Ministry make available to Ghanaians AU activities which took place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
“What goes on in Addis Ababa can never get to the other parts of the continent or Ghana if we don’t get collaborators like the IDEG,” she said.
She described as unhealthy if Africans lacked knowledge on the activities of the African Union and what it stood for as far as the development of the continent was concerned.
She pledged the readiness of the Ministry to collaborate with the IDEG to ensure that various protocols and treaties of the AU were adhered to by Ghana.
She urged the IDEG to take the campaign message to students, especially the Senior High Schools to equip them early with the ideas and the tenets of the AU before they grow up.
Dr Emmanuel Akwettey, Executive Director, IDEG said the campaign formed part of the “State of The Union” (SoTU) project formed in 2009 with 10 African civil Society organisations from Algeria, Ethiopia, Egypt, Rwanda, Cameroun, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Senegal, and South Africa.
“Our aim is to monitoring the conduct of member states of the AU and holding them accountable for “the ratification and implementation of African Union decisions,” he said.
He intimated that IDEG is a founding member of SoTU and hosted the secretariat in Ghana.
Artistes such as Okyeame Kwame, Sherifa Gunu, Efya, Noella Wiyaala, Amanzeba, Gyedu Blay Ambulay and Nana Ama McBrown had been chosen by IDEG as the ambassadors for the campaign.
They had come out with a song and would also embark on public education on the protocols, charters and treaties of the AU.