By Bennie Mundando

The African Union (AU) has successfully held its first ever virtual Executive Council.

First secretary press and tourism at the Zambian embassy in Addis Ababa Ethiopia Inutu Mupango Mwanza says the Thirty-Seventh (XXXVII) Ordinary Session of the Executive Council was held from 13 to 14 October, 2020.

Minister of Foreign Affairs, Joseph Malanji and Zambia’s Ambassador to Ethiopia and Permanent Representative to the AU, Emmanuel Mwamba, attended the meeting on behalf of Zambia.

The Executive Council led by Ministers of Foreign Affairs considered among others the Report of the Joint Sitting of the Ministerial Committee on Scale of Assessment for the newly created Peace Fund.

The Peace Fund will see Africa raise its own resources to tackle peace and security issues. Member states have so far contributed $170million out of the $450million initial target which was 32 percent towards the Fund endowment despite challenges they are faced with as a result of COVID-19 Pandemic.

The Committee of Fifteen Ministers of Finance (F15) also commended Member States for contributing 59 percent of the funds assessed to them in 2020 towards the Union regular budget.

The Executive Council further lifted the sanctions previously imposed on the Republic of South Sudan as well as the Republic of Liberia.

On the Report of the Peace Fund on the Regional Consultations on the Scale of Assessment for Member State contributions to the AU Peace Fund, the meeting decided to continue to use the scale of assessment for the regular budget to assess Member State contributions to the AU Peace Fund in line with the general consensus.

The Council also considered the Report of the ministerial committee on African Candidatures within the international system. The Executive Council coordinates and takes decisions on policies in areas of common interest to Member States.

It is answerable to the Summit Assembly of Heads of States. It considers issues referred to it and monitors the implementation of policies formulated by the Assembly.

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