The two day 39th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council of the African Union (AU) started on 14th October at the AU Headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia with calls highlighting the need to strengthen the fight against Africa’s challenges.

At the official opening ceremony, the Chairperson of the AU Commission, H.E Mr Moussa Faki Mahamat, reported back on actions that had been prescribed by the Executive Council at its last meeting in February this year, focusing on institutional Reform and the smooth functioning of both the Commission and other organs of the Union.

He said the preparation of the budget of the Union for the Financial year 2022, was marked by a methodology of work that leaves little room for imprecisions and uncertainties as to its funding, and that it is focused on the implementation of the Agenda2063 flagship projects.

The austerity budget “is marked, among other things, by the firm rationalisation of expenditure items, compliance with the budgetary ceiling, the financing of supplementary budgets primarily on the basis of internal budgetary savings, the convening of a single  annual session dedicated to the consideration of requests for supplementary budgets, the rigorous  supervision of recourse to the services of consultants, the priority given to virtual meetings, the identification and the elimination of duplication at the level of the Departments, and the budget balance which harmonises predictable revenues and expenses”, the Chairperson said.

Mr Moussa Faki Mahamat stressed the determination of the AU to finance its programmes from its own funds and its rejection of partner funds with conditions.

He also reported that the adopted new departmental structure of the AU Commission is being implemented as part of the ongoing institutional reforms, and that it is taking place in strict compliance with the new recruitment standards and quotas.

On partnerships, the Chairperson urged the meeting to clarify the nature and objectives of interactions with various partners, with a view to building the Africa we Want.

While discussing the report on the operationalization of the AfricaCDC, H.E. Moussa Faki Mahamat said that Africa must continue to strengthen its strategy to fight the pandemic that has affected millions on the continent and led to the deaths of thousands.

He also stated that nutrition and food security will be the theme of the year 2022 and that the Executive Council meeting should pronounce itself on the roadmap relating to treatment of this challenge.

The Chairperson of the Executive Council, who is also the Foreign Minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo, highlighted the meeting’s agenda including; consideration of the report of the 42nd Ordinary Session of the Permanent Representatives Committee, report on the operationalization of the Africa CDC, the roadmap on the theme of the Year 2022 on Nutrition and Food Security, reports of Committees of the Executive Council and Ad Hoc Committees, report of the Joint-Sitting of the Ministerial Committee on Scale of Assessment and Contributions and the Committee of F15, report of the Ministerial Committee on African Candidatures within the International System, and report of the Ministerial Follow up Committee on the Implementation of Agenda 2063.

The same meeting will see the election and appointment of officials of the AU Commission and other AU organs including two (2) Commissioners of the AU Commission, the President and Vice President of the Pan African University (PAU), four (4) Members of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, and four (4) Members of the African Union Advisory Board on Corruption.

The 39th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council will conclude on 15 October 2021, and it is expected to submit its report and recommendations for consideration by the Heads of State and Government during their 3rd Mid-Year Coordination Meeting between the African Union, the RECS and RMS, scheduled to take place virtually on 16 October 2021.

39th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council of the African Union (AU)