By SANDRA UMEH
LAGOS- Mrs Amanda Demechi-Asagba, International President of the African Women Lawyers Association (AWLA), has called for the sustenance of unity amongst African nations to foster cooperation and development.
Demechi-Asagba made the call in a statement on Wednesday in Lagos in commemoration of the African Unity Day also known as Africa Day, celebrated on May 25.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that May 25, is a day set aside to commemorate the founding of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU).
She said: “The History of African Unity Day dates back to May 25, 1963, when the leaders of 32 newly independent African states gathered in Addis Ababa Ethiopia to establish the OAU.
“The OAU is primarily intended to promote unity and cooperation among African states, uphold self-government and respect for territorial boundaries as well as eradication of all forms of disputes.
“Leaders from 30 of the then 32 independent African states signed a founding charter in Addis Ababa and the OAU was consequently, created to help bring about change, freedom and independence to many African countries.”
According to her, Africa Day is a day when all African nations are expected to reflect on the struggles of past heroes who fought for the freedom and unity of the African race.
‘”AWLA enjoins Africans on this day, to reflect on the significance of this struggle by founding fathers who fought for a better tommorow of all Africans.
“In the year 2020, 17 countries on the African continent celebrated 60 years of independence and this lends credence to the struggle by pan African Advocates who brought this into fruition.
“We also remember heroes like Nelson Mandela of South Africa who gave himself for the good of his people .
“Africa is a continent of peace and unity and so, this day further brings to our mind, the need to thrive in peace and unity.
“Our nation Nigeria, being a frontier of peace and unity, epitomises this in its National Anthem where it says in the last stanza …”One nation bound in Freedom, Peace and Untiy.
“The Nigerian Coat of Arm also signifies Unity and Faith, Peace and Progress. This also portrays Nigeria as a leading force in fostering African Peace and Unity.
“AWLA, therefore, joins hands in upholding the peace and unity of Africa and we use this opportunity to call for a continued cooperation among Africian nations, as well as a harmonious relationship to foster developement,” she said. (NAN)