PM Hailemarim calls for urgent solution for conflicts in Africa
Addis Ababa, 30 January 2014 (WIC) – The outgoing AU Chairperson and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn has stressed the need to find urgent solutions to crisis in South Sudan and Central African Republic.
PM Hailemariam was speaking at the opening of the 22nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of State and Governments being held under the theme, “Transforming Africa's Agriculture: Harnessing Opportunities for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development.”
“We need to find urgent solution to rescue these two sisterly countries from falling into the Abyss,” he said. "Failure to do so will have serious implications for peace and security in the region and indeed the whole continent."
Africans therefore, need to help these two fragile African states in restoring peace and stability and addressing their internal challenges, PM Hailemariam said.
Regarding South Sudan, the Premier called on both sides to put down their arms and avoid the country from falling into the precipice.
“Both protagonists should know that the problem cannot be resolved through the barrel of the gun. Therefore, they should be fully committed to seat at the negotiating table without any preconditions so as to find a political settlement to the crises,” he said.
PM Hailemariam, who served the AU as Chairperson in the past one year also, said “We need to build on the progress that we have achieved in the past year and exert more efforts to address some of the emerging challenges confronting our continent.”
PM Hailemariam finally congratulated his successor, Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, President of the Islamic Republic of Mauritania and pledged his full support.
AU Commission Chairperson, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma on her part said that Africa needs to boost food production and improve its manufacturing benefiting from its natural resources and agricultural products.
Dr Dlamini also underscored the need to tackle the root causes of conflicts, to invest in empowerment of young people and women to bring peace to Africa.
She committed efforts to Agenda 2063 developed to galvanize and unite in action all Africans and the Diaspora around the common vision of a peaceful, integrated and prosperous Africa.
President of Mauritania Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz took over as African Union Chairman, replacing PM Hailemariam Desalegn in the one-year post.
Aziz, in his opening speech, congratulated PM Hailemairan for the remarkable work accomplished during his tenure. "He has contributed brilliantly to strengthen the role of Africa on both continental and international levels."
During the opening ceremony, a minute of silence was held in memory of the former president of the republic of South Africa, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.
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