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Kenya is set to host 15 African Heads of State and Government in Nairobi for the forthcoming African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) Extra-Ordinary Summit in September this year; further underpinning Kenya’s increased role in African geopolitical and governance issues.
The summit, set to be held on the 11th of September this year, follows a call by President Uhuru Kenyatta – upon his election as chairperson of the African Peer Review Forum in June this year at the sidelines of the 25th AU meeting – to hold an Extra-Ordinary summit that will seek to formulate ways through which the
mechanism can revitalize itself to strengthen governance in Africa.
President Uhuru Kenyatta invited a core team of representatives of the key structures of the APRM to Nairobi to brief him on pertinent matters of the APRM in early July, (just a few days after the conclusion of the June Summit in Johannesburg) to initiate discussions on preparations for the Extra-Ordinary Summit.
This core team from Algeria, Burkina Faso, Uganda, Rwanda, Chad, Zambia, and South Africa represent the five regions of Africa. Since the July meeting, the core team has held 3 planning meetings to firm up preparations for the Summit.
Speaking while briefing the media at a Nairobi hotel today, Devolution and Planning Cabinet Secretary, Anne Waiguru, said that out of the 35 Heads of State and Government who have been invited, we are already receiving confirmations.
“We have already sent out invitations to Heads of States and until now 15 have confirmed, we expect to get more confirmations in the next few days. ” she said.
She further added that the government is making arrangements to hold all the 35 member Heads of State should they all attend.
“Arrangements to host all the 35 Heads of State and Government plus their respective delegations have been made and besides the Continental Planning Team (CPT), we also have a Local Planning Team (LPT) which is Inter-Ministerial and is hard at work to ensure that Kenya hosts a successful Extra-Ordinary Summit,” she
Topics under consideration during the Extraordinary Summit include:
Revisiting the Philosophy of APRM
Reviewing the APRM Process
Role of APRM in monitoring of AU Agenda 2063 and post 2015 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Resource mobilization for the APRM
Enforcing Compliance with APRM Principles
Integration of the APRM into the African Union
“The actual Summit will take place at the State House but there will be several build-up meetings that will happen at other venues on various dates ahead of the Extra-Ordinary Summit,” said the CS.
Besides member states participating in the APRM, other invitees to the Summit include, Non-State Actors such as the Media, Civil Society Organizations, Academia, Strategic Partners etc.
Africa is the only continent to initiate such a unique and unprecedented mechanism, which reviews the performance of a country against all the components of governance: democracy and human rights, economic governance, corporate governance as well as socio-economic development.
For the last 12 years, the APRM has promoted policy dialogue between leaders and citizens through the national self-assessment, in the process highlighting critical overarching challenges impeding the development of our individual countries and collectively, the African continent.
The challenges include corruption, youth unemployment, weak taxation systems, land and mismanagement of natural resources. In some countries, it has served as an early warning system.
APRM is a function under the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) – a Semi-Autonomous Government Agency (SAGA) under the Ministry of Devolution and Planning.