The Institute of Democratic Governance (IDEG) has urged African leaders to pursue a people-centred and planet-sensitive transformational programmes in line with the Africa Union’s (AU) Agenda 2063, which encapsulates the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Dr Emmanuel Akwetey, the Executive Director of IDEG, said this in a statement copied to the Ghana News Agency to mark the 56th Anniversary of the African Union, on the theme: “Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons: Towards Durable Solutions to Forced Displacement in Africa”
He said the theme for Day should lead to forging strong ties and fostering international cooperation and partnerships towards creating economic opportunities for the people.
The opportunities, he said, would ensure that the African youth remained on the Continent to contribute their quota towards development.
“Notwithstanding visa restrictions and limitations to free movement of people, goods and services, intra-African trade remains the motor for faster and higher growth and transformational development on the Continent,” it said.
“The agenda to transform Africa, therefore, must place premium on effectualising the African Continental Free Trade Agreement,” Dr Akwetey said, and that this would create sustainable jobs for the youth.
“As Africans begin to move freely to engage in common trade to bring about economic development and empowerment of the people, the barriers of language and communication must be eliminated.”
Dr Akwetey called on Africans to begin to learn each other’s language to actualize the bond and unity that had been the bedrock for the formation of the OAU, now the AU.
He said Africa was increasingly embracing a new wave of sustainable development through education and skills revolution, underpinned by science, technology and innovation as reflected in the AU’s Agenda 2063.
With a focus on producing well-educated and empowered Africans, efforts must be intensified to build strong economies and create better opportunities for the African, he said.