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Sierra Leone’s President Julius Maada Bio Demonstrates Leadership at the C-10 Consultative Summit, Leading to the Oyala Communique on UN Security Council Reform

Oyala, Equatorial Guinea, Friday 24 November 2023 – His Excellency President Dr Julius Maada Bio has concluded a Consultative Summit of the African Union, AU, in his capacity as Coordinator of the AU Committee of Ten (C-10) Heads of State and Government on the reform of the United Nations Security Council.

The fifth summit, hosted by H.E. Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, President of the Republic of Equatorial Guinea, primarily deliberated on the reviewed eighteen years of activities of the Committee and acknowledged that significant advancements had been made in canvassing support for the Common African Position, CAP, as espoused in the Ezulwini Consensus and the Sirte Declaration.

In his statement at the opening, President Bio stated that the purpose of the Summit was to take stock of the progress made in terms of delivering on the core mandate of the Committee in so far as canvassing support for the Common Africa Position was concerned.

“We will then decide on strategies to strengthen the support already received from other interest groups in the reform process whilst finding pathways to engage with those groupings with strongly divergent views from the Common Africa Position.

“Our Ministers met in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo, in January 2023 and made several recommendations for our consideration. The recommendations included preparing for ‘enhanced engagement’ in the intergovernmental negotiations framework on the Security Council reform (IGN) process, guided by the 2015 Framework Document, in a bid to move the IGN process forward.

“The current iteration of the Revised Co-Chairs Elements Paper dated 2nd June 2023 states that: There is a wider recognition and broader support by Member States for the legitimate aspiration of the African countries to play their rightful role on the global stage, including through an increased presence in the Security Council, as reflected in the Ezulwini Consensus and the Sirte Declaration adopted by the African Union in 2005. Redressing the historical injustice against Africa is viewed as a priority, and several delegations emphasised that Africa should be treated as a special case,” he stated.

At the end of the closed session, under the chairmanship of H.E. Dr Julius Maada Bio as Coordinator of the AU Committee of Ten C-10, the leaders issued the Communiqué of the Oyala Consultative Summit, emphasising that the CAP was the only viable option to redress the historical injustice done to the African Continent.

“Officials to adopt means of enhanced engagement at all levels to properly situate Africa to take advantage of any opportunity to continue to advance the CAP that may arise from the efforts of the Intergovernmental Negotiations (IGN) Co-Chairs, Member States, and Interest Groups. This includes advocating for the treatment of Africa as a special case and a priority in the reform process.

“In this vein, any submission to the Summit of the Future by the IGN should have an unequivocal message of addressing the non-representation of Africa in the permanent category with all the prerogatives and privileges as the current permanent members and gross underrepresentation in the non-permanent category of the UN Security Council. The message should also make the clarion call for Africa to be treated as a priority and special case in the reform process,” it states.

The document also stressed the critical importance of heightened engagement with the five Permanent Members of the UN Security Council, noting that the C-10 Heads of State had agreed to continue outreach to them as counterparts.

For more information: State House Media and Communications Unit

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