Celebrating Pan Africanism, continental pride

Rutendo Gomwe and
Mutsawshe Mashandure
Herald Reporters

Africa Day, which Zimbabwe celebrates today, is a unique opportunity to share information, knowledge and best practices of the past and work towards a more prosperous continent.

Today, the African continent is celebrating the 60th anniversary of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) and its successor, the African Union.

In a posting on the African Union’s website yesterday, the continental body said the 60th anniversary celebration is an occasion to recognize the role and contributions of the continental organisation’s founders and the many other Africans on the continent.

In its statement, the AU said it was also an occasion to celebrate those in the diaspora who have contributed to the political emancipation of the continent and equally to the socio-economic emancipation of Africa.

“This is an opportunity to share information, knowledge and best practices of the past and encourage each other to adopt the vision of the AU as well as drive the realization of “Africa We Want” under Agenda 2063.

“This is an opportune moment for the African Union to reflect on the spirit of Pan-Africanism, linking the past to the present and the continent’s aspirations for the future,” the AU said.

Algeria’s Ambassador to Zimbabwe Noreddin Yazeed said his country supports the need for development and integration of the African economy, as reflected by its signing and ratification of the AfCFTA.

“Algeria attaches particular importance to the implementation of the AfCFTA. This importance is illustrated through the prominent interest of the President of the Republic, Abdelmadjid Tebboune, in promoting economic relations with African countries and the development of intra-African trade.

Ambassador Yazeed said, “In this context, the Algerian government has redoubled its efforts to accelerate the implementation of major projects launched in the past and to establish greater connectivity with the rest of the African continent.”

Mr. Takura Chavundura, a student at Harare Polytechnic, said he would wear African attire to celebrate the day.

“We will be having zoom meetings with our friends from Botswana, the South and Zambia to discuss the continent. Let us unite as Africans and love each other as one people,” he said.

A Harare woman who prefers to be identified only as Munashe said Africa Day is important for Africans to stand up against outside forces.

“It begins when we appreciate that we

are Africans and know where we stand and believe we will reach our potential as Africans. Africa Day is a day when we celebrate being purely African,” she said.

Social commentator Mr Edmore Muchirahondo said the day is paramount on the calendar of Africans.

“What has happened over the years since its founding in 1963 by our forefathers has been a loss of traction in terms of Pan-Africanism – the founding values ​​of the African Union. We must remember this day and speak boldly about the day we came.

“I think it is essential for us and our leaders to return to our founding values ​​which are Pan-Africanism, united as Africans and fighting to become a standalone continent that is capable of economic and political development. does not trust Western countries in the matter,” he said.

Mr Samuel Makumbe (23), a Harare resident, said he would be celebrating Africa Day with family and friends.

“This day is for Africans and workers will have the opportunity to relax and have a good time with friends and family. It is a special day for Africans as it will be a day to remember Africans.

On the same day, 25 May 1963, 32 independent African states together with leaders of major African liberation movements met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to chart a path for the complete independence of Africa from imperialism, colonialism and apartheid.

The result of the meeting was the creation of the Organization of African Unity (OAU), Africa’s first post-independence continental body.

The OAU was formed as an expression of the Pan-African vision for an Africa that was united, independent and in control of its own destiny and this was celebrated in the OAU Charter which was adopted on 25 May #AfricaDay, 1963.

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