On the 25th May every year more than fifty countries celebrate Africa Day, a commemoration of the founding of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) in 1963. Originally a largely political organisation (17 of the member states were former European colonies), the OAU transformed into the African Union as the challenges faced by the continent became increasingly economic, rather than political, during the 1990s. South Africa joined the movement post democracy in 1994, and was one of the founding members when the African Union was officially launched in Durban in 2002. In 2012 former SA Foreign Minister, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, became the first female chair of the AU Commission, a post now held by Zimbabwean President, Robert Mugabe.
The theme for Africa Day 2015 is ‘We Are Africa’, a simple, but very important statement given the recent Xenophobic attacks experienced in South Africa. Let’s take this opportunity to experience a sense of African unity and pride in this incredible continent of ours!
Image courtesy of the Department of Arts & Culture.