By Ismaila Chafe
Abuja – Ahead of Sunday’s opening of the 30th African Union Summit, President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, started his four-day engagement.
He joined 14 other members of the Peace and Security Council (PSC) to discuss conflict and crisis situations across the continent.
PSC is a standing organ of the AU for the prevention, management and resolution of conflicts.
This was contained in a statement issued by the President’s Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu in Abuja on Saturday.
He said that the meeting would be discussing the persistence of violent conflicts and crisis situations in some parts of the continent.
He said the meeting would also discuss the upsurge of Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and refugees, climate change and its consequences as well as the issue of the derailment of national development programmes.
According to him, the meeting is essentially reviewing the situations in Somalia, South Sudan, Libya, Guinea Bissau, the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
“It is also discussing the situation in Lake Chad Basin, the regional efforts to combat Boko Haram as well as the situation in Mali and the Sahel region which continues to be a source of deep concern despite efforts by the countries of the region and the United Nations,’’ he added.
The PSC’s major duty is to “conduct early warning and preventive diplomacy, facilitate peace-making, establish peace-support operations and, in certain circumstances, recommend intervention in Member States to promote peace, security and stability.”
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Buhari arrived Addis Ababa on Friday evening ahead of Sunday’s opening of the 30th African Union Summit.
NAN reports that Buhari is expected to unveil a new logo on anti-corruption on Monday as part of activities meant to inaugurate a campaign against the menace of corruption across the continent.
The unveiling followed his endorsement to champion the fight against corruption on the continental level at the 29th summit held last year.
The president would speak on “Winning the Fight against Corruption: A Sustainable Path to Africa’s Transformation”.
Beyond the issue of anti-corruption fight, delegates attending the summit would also be brainstorming on ways of implementing single air transportation system, free movement on the continent and free trade.
The delegates are also expected to deliberate on climate change, security among other issues bedeviling the continent.(NAN)