African Union to be declared 26 May

Abuja- Nigeria (PANA) -- The African Union is to be declared 26 May after the mandatory 36 of OAU's 53 Member States have deposited their instruments of ratification of the Union's Constitutive Act, it was announced in Abuja, Nigeria, Friday.
OAU Secretary General Salim Ahmed Salim said at the African AIDS Summit that the Act had become a legal Treaty with the required ratification.
Under the Constitutive Act, the Union, which replaces the OAU goes into force 30 days after two-thirds of OAU Member States have deposited their instruments of ratification.
May 26 is a day after the Africa Liberation Day, marking the formation of the OAU in 1963.
The African Union, initiated at the OAU extra-ordinary Summit in Sirte, Libya in September 1999, and adopted by the Lome (Togo) Summit in July 2000, was proclaimed at the 1-2 March Sirte II Summit after all 53 OAU Member nations signed the Act.
Countries which are yet to ratify the treaty include Cameroon, Nigeria, Egypt, Kenya, Ghana, Angola and Gabon.
With the strong backing of the Libyan leader Col.
Moammar Kadhafi, the Union, seeks greater African co-operation and integration.
It is hoped that the Union would enable Africa tackle its developmental problems more effectively.
The OAU's July 37th Summit in Lusaka, Zambia, will be crucial in determining the fate of the Addis Ababa-based foremost continental Organisation and the way forward for the much-anticipated United States of Africa.

27 april 2001 13:43:00




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