Countries across the continent planned Africa Day celebrations on Thursday, in honor of the May 25 anniversary of the 1963 founding of the Organisation of African Unity, the prelude to the African Union. The day focuses on African identity and a vision for the future of African nations and their citizens.
“Africa is on the march towards a more prosperous future in which all its citizens, young, old, male, female, rural, urban, of all creeds and backgrounds are empowered to realize their full potential, live with satisfaction and pride about their continent,” the African Union (AU) said in a statement. “A future with healthy, well educated people living in robust and developed economies. Indeed, this is a progressive march towards the ‘Africa we want’ as envisioned in Agenda 2063.”
The “demographic dividend” theme of the AU is central to this year’s celebrations, as Africa looks to leverage its advantage in developing its young, talented and hopeful populations.
“Over the last ten years, it has become evident that a demographic dividend lens offers a strategic basis for focusing and prioritizing investments in people in general and the youth in particular,” the AU said, “in order to achieve sustainable development, inclusive economic growth, and to build an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, which is driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the international arena.”
Africa Day at the AU Headquarters in Addis Ababa will include a musical concert, food and cultural celebrations, and panel discussions on the “four pillars” of the demographic dividend theme.
Image: African Union