FILE - An overview of the 50th anniversary African Union Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, as seen on May 25, 2013 - Wikimedia Commons/US Department of State
CAIRO - 12 February 2019: African Union Legal Counsel Namira Negm said that the AU funding comes in consultation between member states, according to each country's financial capability and production.
Egypt, South Sudan, Nigeria, Morocco, and Algeria are the largest contributors as they form 60 percent of the AU's budget, besides Angola that was recently added to the list, the Egyptian diplomat said.
She added that member states attempt to turn the AU to become self-financed in terms of all programs, revealing that this will be achieved in stages so as not to burden the member states.
A committee at the ambassadorial level deals with budget, appointments, and staff problems and tackles the long-standing "inherited" mistakes, Negm said, adding that the AU assesses itself transparently, and that all issues are open for reform.
The AU needs reform,Negm stressed, adding that reforms are carried out in all international organizations. She explained that reforms must ensure that the organization serves its member states.
The African Union communicates with the International Criminal Court on several cases, Negm referred, pointing out that the AU has defended Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir before the ICC in defiance of his international immunity.
Concerning the illegal stripping of Mauritius's Chagos Islands’ biggest island, Diego Garcia, by Britain, which is now home for a major US air base, Negm condemned the seizure, saying that it resembles the Balfour Declaration.
She affirmed that the AU has defended the issue of the island in the ICC through arguments that she said "will be remembered by history," adding that the AU aims to "convey the voice of Africa legally and politically, [and to]defend the rights stripped from some countries of the continent."
Egypt's President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi received on Sunday the chairmanship of the African Union Assembly of Heads of State and Government from Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame for a one-year term.