Windhoek-Vice-President Nangolo Mbumba has requested the African Union (AU) Panel of the Wise (PoW) members to ensure peace through effective conflict resolution in all African countries.
Speaking at the official opening of the 18th statutory meeting of the AU PoW in Windhoek yesterday, Mbumba said Africa requires a sound conflict prevention and resolution programme as exemplified in the African Peace and Security Architecture, of which the PoW is an essential pillar.
“Africa needs to capitalise on your wisdom and experiences in finding solutions to violent conflicts and to the maintenance of peace and security,” he added.
Former president Hifikepunye Pohamba chairs the PoW.
Mbumba said Namibia encourages strong cooperation and communication between the PoW and incumbent presidents in Africa.
“Please advise those of us in power today to improve the governance of our people,” he added.
Mbumba said he was proud to have the “gentle giant” in former president Pohamba, a Mo Ibrahim laureate, as chairperson of the distinguished panel.
“He focused on forging national cohesion and reconciliation at a key stage of Namibia’s consolidation of democracy and economic development,” he said.
He said Pohamba’s membership of the PoW is perfectly matched to what he believes in, and he quoted Pohamba: ‘I believe the new African leader must strive to deliver peace, unity and equitable development.’
Mbumba said that means governing in the best interest of all citizens, regardless of the political, ethnic or religious affiliation of communities.
He said President Hage Geingob always says Namibia is a child of international solidarity, is a baby delivered with the supervision of the U.N. and other brotherly African countries.
“It was due to such strong unequivocal support of like-minded friendly nations, including those that may be in political turmoil currently, that we are today an independent and free nation,” he added.
Therefore, he said, both former and current African leaders should not give up on ”our brothers and sisters who have fallen on hard times, until they are fully restored to the African community of brotherhood and sisterhood”.
The two-day 18th meeting of the AU PoW started in Windhoek yesterday. The meeting is being attended by among others the AU Commissioner for Peace and Security, Ambassador Smail Chergui.
The Panel of the Wise is one of the critical pillars of the Peace and Security Architecture of the African Union and elected members serve a three-year term.
The mandate of the panel is to support and advise on the efforts of the chairperson of the AU Commission and the AU Peace and Security Council in the area of conflict.
The panel also assists the AU Commission in mapping out strategies to address threats to peace and security by providing regular advice and analysis.