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Forum on United States of Africa Ends in Dakar

Aug 10, 2009, 6:31 AM

Mr. Ebrima S. Dem, the national representative of Global Unification, was part of the delegates that gathered in the City of Dakar for a 4-day symposium on the theme: "The United States of Africa and forum on the role and place of Africa in global governance". This symposium was organised by the Senegalese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the University of Cheick Anto Diob, Dakar, with support from CODESTRIA. It was held at the conference centre of Hotel Meridien President.

The forum brought together more 300 participants in over 56 countries in Africa, Europe, Asia and the Caribbean. It was designed to bring together African intellectuals, at home and in the Diaspora, policy-makers, members of civil society, women groups, and researchers in a common platform to share their ideas in the drive towards a federal African state.

In his opening statement, His Excellency, Abdoulaye Wade, the President of the Republic of Senegal thanked all the delegates for honouring the invitation to take part in the Africa's renaissance. He reiterated his stance that the only way Africa can compete with the other regions of the world, is to create federal African states that embraces diversity. Me. Wade went further to challenge African intellectuals, civil society and NGOs, to do more in convincing African political leaders to make the United States of Africa a dream come true. He blamed the African intellectuals for their stand in engaging political leaders.

"For far too long, African intellectuals do not come out to support African leaders on how to move the continent forward," he said.

President Wade's speech was amplified by Prof. Iba Der Thaim, who dilated on the need to create forum of this nature to educate the African masses.

Also, Dr. Cheick Tijan Gadio, Senegalese Minister of Foreign Affairs talked at length on Africa as a sovereign state and federalism. He stressed that for Africa to regain it lost dignity and moves out of its current decadence, characterised by poverty, marginalisation, xenophobic attacks and border conflict, is to create the long-awaited United States of Africa that would ensure free movement of goods and persons; develop a single currency for Africa and one passport for all its citizens.

He called on Africans to work together for the common good of the people in Africa. Dr. Gadio also suggested "the need to create a 6th region of Africa in federal states that would represent Africans in the Diaspora".

Other speakers included, Jean Ping, the President of African Union Authority, Prof. Honorat Aguessy, President of the World Pan African Council, Prof. Francis Nesbit of San Diego University, Prof. Molefi Kete Asante of Temple University, among others.   Each of the speakers talked on Africa's long-term development effort, based on the following themes: federalism and African union authority, federalism, culture and national languages, role and place of Africa in the global governance; and federalism, economic development and science and technology.

The forum led to the birth of two pro pan African associations, namely the Provisional Pan African Scientific Council on the United States of Africa, a body made up of scholars and other stakeholders in African high education and research, and a Pan African Youth Alliance on the United States of Africa, comprising youths from 15 countries in Africa, the Caribbean and Europe.