By Tesfa-Alem Tekle
March 19, 2016 (ADDIS ABABA) – The fifth Tana High-Level Forum on Security in Africa will take place in Ethiopia next month, organisers announced on Friday.
- Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan (AFP)
The forum will be held in the northern Bahir-Dar city of Amhara Regional State on 16-17 April, 2016, under the theme “Africa in the Global Security Agenda.
The former Nigerian President and chairperson of Tana Board, Olusegun Obasanjo, told reporters in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa that Africa’s role in global security and peace mission will be high on agenda for discussion during the two-day gathering.
Organisers of the forum told Sudan Tribune that the chairman of the Kofi Annan Foundation and former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan will be a keynote speaker to address peace and security-related issues of the continent.
With regard to Tana Forum, Annan earlier in November said that Africa is in midst of a rapid social, political, and economic transformation and these transformations and the changing fortunes of its citizens come with added responsibilities.
“As Africa’s economic importance in the world increases, it must assume its growing importance maturely and conscientiously, including on security related concerns. I look forward to discussing these issues at the 2016 Tana Forum” said Annan, also a co-recipient of the 2001 Nobel Peace Prize.
Rwandan President, Paul Kagame, is also expected to address the forum on Africa’s development based on Rwanda experience.
According to organisers, this year’s Forum will further open wide-ranging dynamic debates on the nature and causes of security challenges Africa is facing.
Andreas Eshete, the deputy chairperson of Tana Board, said the theme of Tana Forum 2016 is timely and the Forum will serve as a platform to craft African-led solutions to continent’s security problems.
Participants will collaboratively engage in thorough discussions on current security status of Africa and are expected to put directions on ways how to combat pending security threats posed against the continent.
The Tana High-Level Forum is an annual meeting which brings together a wide spectrum of African leaders, heads of state and government; leaders of regional organisations; concerned civil society; the private sector; eminent scholars and practitioners; students, youth media and representatives of African and non-African multi-lateral bodies.
The continental forum intends for Africa to eventually control its own security destiny by crafting home-grown solutions and avoid externally designed solutions particularly those driven from neo-realist assumptions.