Every year, the Heads of State and Government of The African Union decide upon a theme which focuses on a key issue facing the continent and which constitutes a focal area upon which the key activities and messages of the African Union will be anchored.

In 2019 the annual theme of the African Union will be “The Year of Refugees, Returnees and Internally Displaced Persons: Towards durable solutions to forced displacement in Africa.

The 2019 AU Theme is driven by the need for greater commitment by Africa to address the plight of its citizens in forced migration situations, by implementing strategic and relevant programmes and working towards the ratification of the various AU treaties and legal instruments addressing the plight of refugees and displaced persons to ensure we achieve the goal of Aspiration 4 of Agenda 2063 to provide a peaceful and secure environment for all Africans on the continent.

Various AU treaties governing issues related to refugees, human rights, governance and promoting peace on the continent include the OAU Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa, African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights, OAU Convention for the Elimination of Mercenaries in Africa, OAU Convention on the Prevention and Combating of Terrorism and the African Charter on Democracy, Elections and Governance.

Find out more about these treaties as well and their status of ratification by African states by visiting www.au.int

About the 2019 Theme Logo: The logo for the Theme of the Year has been built around the crisis facing refugees in Africa. Whereas migration is a common phenomenon as people have always relocated for various reasons, in the case of Africa the continent is often painted as a miserable place because migration is as a result of civil strife, poverty and a myriad of other factors thereby promoting the narrative that Africa cannot care for its people. Africans and their governments have always opened their borders and welcomed into their communities their brothers and sister fleeing their homes for various reasons providing a safe haven as long as it is required.

The 2019 AU theme logo shows a mother embracing Africa with its child which encompasses love and affection. Africa knows how to take care of its own in each regard no matter what.