Seven years ago African leaders committed themselves towards an end to armed conflict. At the 50th anniversary celebration that marked the founding of the African Union, they promised lasting peace on the continent, pledging not to pass down the burden of armed conflicts to “the next generation of Africans.”
This promise was followed by “the adoption in 2016 of the Lusaka Road Map to end conflict by 2020. The document outlined 54 practical steps that needed to be taken. They focused on political, economic, social, environmental and legal issues.
They ranged from adequately funding the African Standby Force for deployment, to stopping rebels or insurgents and their backers from accessing weapons. Other steps included fighting human trafficking, corruption and illicit financial flows.” —That the Union continue to be silent against African leaders who are committing abuses against their citizens, is another ground for conflict on the continent.
But as we continue to see, the African Union perhaps has no interests in SILENCING THE GUNS! We know most of the conflicts on the continent are propelled by a contestation by rival groups, political parties and individuals laying claim to the seat of power through legal means by way of elections and are often not given a fair playing field, something that has taken African nations to conflict in the past, African leaders continue to lead by fiat, and the AU it seems has no interests in reigning African leaders in, to behave. That’s the elephant in the room the AU will need to address. The Union’s aims seem cosmetic if it does not address the PRINCIPLE root causes of these armed conflicts, it is hard to silence these guns, and the sooner it did that the better, especially with Islamic fundamentalism spreading on the continent, especially the Sahel.
Today though, “THIRD THIRDISM” is on the rise with incumbent African leaders late in their 70 and 80 years refusing to leave power, and because the African Union has not been able to silence the guns and reign in African leaders, it may be preparing the continent for another implosion of more CONFLICT…in addition to what is currently obtaining.