News / Africa

AU's Slow Recognition of NTC Prompts Calls for Reform

The pre-Gadhafi Libyan flag flies in front of the United Nations headquarters during the 66th session of the General Assembly at United Nations headquarters in New York, Sept. 20, 2011.
The pre-Gadhafi Libyan flag flies in front of the United Nations headquarters during the 66th session of the General Assembly at United Nations headquarters in New York, Sept. 20, 2011.

Multimedia

Audio
TEXT SIZE - +

The African Union has finally recognized Libya's National Transitional Council, dealing another blow to ousted leader Moammar Gadhafi.   Some African leaders say the delay in acting on Libya shows the African Union is out of touch.

The African Union says it is ready to support the transitional council as it works to form an inclusive government in Libya.  In a statement Tuesday, the alliance called on the interim council to protect all foreign workers in Libya amid reports that some militia have targeted African migrants who they suspect of being pro-Gadhafi mercenaries.

The African Union has been slow to act on Libya. One month ago, the interim council was recognized by most European nations and the United States along with several prominent African governments including Nigeria, Ethiopia, Senegal, and Ivory Coast.

Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara says the African Union delay on Libya shows how little influence the alliance has.

"I must confess I am very disappointed with the African Union - the lack of efficiency, the lagging decisions, the fact that the different sub-regions are not well-connected into the decision-making process.  And I don't think the [AU] Commission really has any power or responsibility," said Ouattara.

On Libya, Ouattara says it has been as if the African Union does not know what is going on in the world when all you have to do is watch television to see that the National Transitional Council is in power.  The Ivorian president says it is up to regional alliances such as the Economic Community of West African States to improve the larger 54-member group.

"Getting the African Union to work better should be a priority," Ouattara added.  "And we at ECOWAS certainly have an ambition in that.  We comprise 15 countries.  I think we are better coordinated.  We are in touch with each other."

President Ouattara spoke at a session of the U.S. Council on Foreign Relations in New York, where he shared the stage with Sierra Leone's leader Ernest Bai Koroma.  President Koroma says the response to the Libyan crisis shows the need to rework the African Union.

"The groupings within the Union are visible, and they may be responsible for a sluggishness of the Union," said Koroma.  "The position of some of us is that we have to transform the whole concept of the African Union, make it into an institution that will have a completeness in terms of mandate and decision-making.  It is not only the promptness of taking a decision but also having the authority of implementing decisions that are taken."

Gadhafi has long been the African Union's chief financier.  Taking the place of the Organization of African Unity, the African Union was founded at a summit in Gadhafi's hometown in 1999.

Human rights activist Shehu Sani is the author of the book "Civilian Dictators of Africa".  He says the African Union is embarrassed over Libya.

"The rebel government in Libya is being seen to be a pro-European and pro-Western establishment," said Sani.  "And the AU feel embarrassed and disappointed for the very fact that they have been ignored by the rebels and even by NATO.  There can't be any peace in Libya without such issues being tackled."

Given Gadhafi's financial generosity with governments and rebel movements across Africa, Sani says Libya's interim council must move quickly to isolate him.

"It must incorporate states that are around Libya," added Sani.  "It must also win the hearts of Gadhafi's friends in order to ostracize him.  If not, there can't be peace in Tripoli."

South Africa led the block of African Union members resisting recognition of Libya's interim council. But Jacob Zuma's government Tuesday followed the African Union announcement with South African recognition of Tripoli's new leaders.

You May Like

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

John the XXIII and John Paul II will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square on April 27 More

Thailand Reacts to Plots Targeting Israelis

Authorities hope arrest of two Lebanese suspects will disrupt plot to attack young Israeli tourists More

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

'Once Upon a Forest' takes viewers deep into heart of tropical rainforest More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Churchi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 22, 2014 4:14 PM
On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Robotic Mission Kicks Up Lunar Dust

A robotic mission to the moon was deliberately crashed onto the lunar surface late last week, but not before scientists had collected data gathered by the spacecraft which was designed to self-destruct. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports on the preliminary findings of the craft, called LADEE - an acronym for Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer.
Video

Video Boko Haram Claims Responsibility for Bombing in Nigerian Capital

The Nigerian militant group known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a bombing in the capital on April 14th that killed 75 people. In the video message, Abubakar Shekau, the man who says he ordered the bombing, says nothing about the mass abduction of more than 100 teenage girls, most of whom are still missing. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Abuja.
Video

Video Ukraine Developments Hang Over Obama Trip to Asia

President Barack Obama's trip to Asia this week comes as concerns over Beijing's territorial ambitions are growing in the region. Those concerns have been compounded by Russia's recent actions in Ukraine and the possibility that Chinese strategists might be looking to Crimea as a model for its territorial disputes with its neighbors. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid