Sierra Leone’s President, His Excellency Dr.Ernest Bai Koroma, has arrived in Kampala, Uganda to attend the 15th Summit of the African Union Heads of State. On arrival at the Entebbe International Airport , the President inspected a guard of honor mounted by the Uganda Army before being driven to the Munyonyo Presidential suites.
The African Union Summit has been going on in Kampala for the past week but the Heads of State Summit begins today, Sunday and will end on Tuesday . The theme of the summit is Maternal, Infant and Child Health and Development in Africa . Also arriving in Kampala yesterday were Presidents Bingu Wa Mutharika of Malawi, Rupiah Banda of Zambia, Abdoulaiye Wade of Senegal, Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria, Hifikepunye Pohamba of Namibia, Pakalitha Mosisili of Lesotho, Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia, Denis Sassou-Nguesso of Congo and Algeria’s Abdelaziz Bouleflika.
The AU Summit will take place without three countries Madagascar, Niger and Guinea which were suspended from the AU because of unconstitutional change of governments .
According to the Nigerian News Agency, The 15th AU Summit, tagged “Kampala 2010’’ , is also expected to consider, among other continental issues, the proposal by the Libyan leader, Muammar Gaddafi for the transformation of the AU into an African Union Authority (AUA) . It will be recalled that the 13th Ordinary Session of the AU held in July 2009 in Sirte, Libya brainstormed on issues related to the Union Government that culminated in a consensus to establish AUA to replace the African Union Commission.
Gaddafi, the then Chairperson of the AU and the proponent, contended that the transformation would bring stability to Africa as the continent would be speaking with one voice, defending common position in international negotiations.
The News Agency further reported that the gathering of all heads of government from all the 52 AU member nations will also consider its earlier decision to put a definitive end to the scourge of unconstitutional changes of government in member nations.
The scourge the leaders consider as undermining the progress achieved in the on-going democratisation processes in the continent and constitutes a threat to peace and security in Africa.
In addition, the Summit will review its efforts on the Tripoli Declaration on the elimination of conflicts in Africa and the promotion of sustainable peace as well as the proclaimtion of 2010 as the Year of Peace and Security in Africa.
Noting that in 2010, seventeen African countries will be celebrating their fiftieth anniversaries as independent states, the Summit is to emphasise its position that the countries concerned should seize the opportunity to carry out programmes collaboratively in support of the year of Peace and Security.
Other issues for considerations at the Summit are the integration of NEPAD into AU structures and processes, the Africa-Arab cooperation for food security in the continent, climate change and the implementation of the AU border programme.