PRESIDENT Edgar Lungu says there is need for the African Union (AU) Committee of 10 (C-10) advocating an Africa’s permanent seat at the United Nations Security Council, to project and propel Africa’s desire and agenda to attain the continental aspiration.

And President Lungu has noted that there can be no meaningful development in the Great Lakes region if some members were facing civil strife.

President Lungu was speaking in Windhoek, Namibia, yesterday at the just-ended consultative summit of the C-1O heads of state on the reforms of the UN Security Council. The President said the continuation of the inter-governmental negotiations gave hope that Africa was united towards its resolve to have permanent representation at the UN Security Council.

He said the forthcoming AU summit to be held from 21st to the 31 January 2016 in Addis Ababa provided Africa with an opportunity to make a clear decision as to what course of action the continent would take by giving guidance on the new strategies towards achieving the common African goal.

He observed that negotiations in New York over Africa’s quest to have a permanent seat in the UN Security Council looked bleak and showed that they were far from reaching a common ground and that the pattern of re-establishing long held national or group positions remained the norm towards many areas that affected nations.

“The continuation of inter-governmental negotiations give hope that the process will make headway. As a Committee of 10, we have a duty to project and propel Africa’s desire and agenda within the umbrella of a common continental aspiration. We must not falter on this strong impetus. The report presented today by the ministers represents an important undertaking of consultations with the five permanent members of the Security Council.

“From these reports, it is my hope that the AU summit will make clear decision on which direction to proceed and to give guidance on new strategies towards achieving our common goals.

“My understanding is that the negotiations in New York are far from reaching common ground and the pattern of restating long held national or group positions remains the norm. For Africa, I propose that the time has now come for us to move beyond this stage,” President Lungu said.

He noted that for some time now, Africa has been grappled with the question of multiple membership where some African countries had embraced the negotiation position that was not in consonance with the common African position as enunciated in the Ezulwini consensus and Sirte Declaration.

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