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The AU represented the culmination of decades of struggle and work that had gone into plans such as the:

The AU represented the culmination of decades of struggle and work that had gone into plans such as the:

  • Lagos Plan of Action (LPA) and the Final Act of Lagos (1980);
  • The African Charter on Human and People’s Rights (Nairobi 1981) and the Grand Bay Declaration and Plan of Action on Human rights.
  • Africa’s Priority Programme for Economic recovery (APPER) – 1985: an emergency programme designed to address the development crisis of the 1980s, in the wake of protracted drought and famine that had engulfed the continent and the crippling effect of Africa’s external indebtedness.
  • OAU Declaration on the Political and Socio-Economic Situation in Africa and the Fundamental Changes.
  • The Charter on Popular Participation adopted in 1990:
  • The Treaty establishing the African Economic Community (AEC) – 1991: commonly known as the Abuja Treaty.
  • The Mechanism for Conflict Prevention, Management and Resolution (1993)
  • Cairo Agenda for Action (1995): a programme for relaunching Africa’s political, economic and social development.
  • African Common Position on Africa’s External Debt Crisis (1997): a strategy for addressing the Continent’s External Debt Crisis.
  • The 2000 Solemn Declaration on the Conference on Security, Stability, Development and Cooperation: establishes the fundamental principles for the promotion of Democracy and Good Governance in the Continent.

One of the major advances of the AU over the OAU was the incorporation of the Global African Family (called the Diaspora) as the 6th region of the African Union. There were mechanisms set in motion to work out representation for the African descendants outside of Arica in the African Union.

The Pan African movement of the streets and villages did not wait on governments to give them the rights of freedom of movement. Traders and workers all across Africa claimed freedom of movement and opposed the maintenance of the borders erected at Berlin. Cultural workers and creative artists from Africa and in the Global African Family strengthened the bonds of the Pan African Movement. The enemies of Pan Africanism and Reparative justice went overboard to demonize the leader of Libya and to represent the goals of African Unification as if this came from the head of Gaddafi, discounting the long struggles for African redemption and Unity since the period of Marcus Garvey and Kwame Nkrumah. The demonization and opposition to the unification of Africa was seen on full display in 2007 when there was the Grand Debate about forming the Union Government and the United States of Africa. Under the Constitutive Act of 2001 there had been timetables for the development of an African Monetary System, the African Central Bank and the Common Currency.

Just as in the division between the Casablanca group and the Monrovia Group there were some leader who called for a gradual approach to establish the Regional Economic Communities (REC) as opposed to continental Communities of Africans. This faction of the African leadership argued for gradual unity. Whatever the differences, however, the political leaders of Africa were brought to an awareness of the plans of external forces when NATO invaded Libya in 2011 under the idea of humanitarian intervention. The military destruction of Libya and the assassination and humiliation of President Gaddafi created a new sense of urgency for the rekindling of a strong Pan African movement. From 2012 there were meetings and consultations about the holding of the 8th Pan African Congress.