African Day @ Parliament

African Community Council of Wellington (ACCW) in conjunction with MP Ibrahim Omer, will host parliament celebration of Africa Day 2023. All members of the African community including family and friends of Africa are welcome to attend to celebrate 60 years of advancements since the first establishment of Organisation of African Unity (OAU) on 25 May 1963. 

After this event, there will be an African Cultural Festival on 30 September at Te Rauparaha Arena, Porirua. This replaces the usual Shed 6 event. In addition, a series of Women and Men’s events are also lined up, do stay connected to ACCW communication channels for further update.

Date: Thursday 8 June 2023
Venue: Banquet Hall, New Zealand Parliament
Time: 5:30pm to 8pm
Dress Code: Formal and African Attire
RSVP: Compulsory (due to parliament security protocols with 300 capacity) – RSVP closes 1 June 2023

The African Union prides itself with a vision of “An Integrated, Prosperous and Peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the global arena.” The AU recognises the contributions of Africans in diaspora towards achieving this vision.

In May 1963, 32 Heads of independent African States met in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to sign the Charter creating Africa’s first post-independence continental institution, The Organisation of African Unity (OAU). The OAU was the manifestation of the pan-African vision for an Africa that was united, free and in control of its own destiny and this was solemnised in the OAU Charter in which the founding fathers recognised that freedom, equality, justice and dignity were essential objectives for the achievement of the legitimate aspirations of the African peoples and that there was a need to promote understanding among Africa’s peoples and foster cooperation among African states in response to the aspirations of Africans for brother-hood and solidarity, in a larger unity transcending ethnic and national Differences. The guiding philosophy was that of Pan-Africanism which centred on African socialism and promoted African unity, the communal characteristic and practices of African communities, and a drive to embrace Africa’s culture and common heritage.

The OAU Charter spelled out the purpose of the Organisation namely:

  • To promote the unity and solidarity of the African States;
  • To coordinate and intensify their cooperation and efforts to achieve a better life for the peoples of Africa;
  • To defend their sovereignty, their territorial integrity and independence;
  • To eradicate all forms of colonialism from Africa; and
  • To promote international cooperation, having due regard to the Charter of the United Nations and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Each element of the African Union logo signifies Africa’s past, present and future: Palm Leaves on either side stand for peace, Gold Circle symbolises Africa’s wealth and bright future, Green Circle stands for African hopes and aspirations, Plain Gold Map of Africa without boundaries in inner circle signifies African unity and 7 interlocking Red rings at base of emblem signify African solidarity and the blood shed for Africa’s liberation.

The AU Flag has a ceremonial status and is used for official functions and by high ranking officials. The flag consists of a map of Africa encircled by 55 stars representing the 55 member states of the African Union. The AU Anthem is:

Let us all unite and celebrate together
The victories won for our liberation
Let us dedicate ourselves to rise together
To defend our liberty and unity

O Sons and Daughters of Africa
Flesh of the Sun and Flesh of the Sky
Let us make Africa the Tree of Life

Let us all unite and sing together
To uphold the bonds that frame our destiny
Let us dedicate ourselves to fight together
For lasting peace and justice on earth

O Sons and Daughters of Africa
Flesh of the Sun and Flesh of the Sky
Let us make Africa the Tree of Life

Let us all unite and toil together
To give the best we have to Africa
The cradle of mankind and fount of culture
Our pride and hope at break of dawn

O Sons and Daughters of Africa
Flesh of the Sun and Flesh of the Sky
Let us make Africa the Tree of Life

New Zealand engages strongly with the African Union (AU), a group of 55 African countries that work to promote unity and coordination among countries on the continent. New Zealand supported the development of the AU Handbook which provides a guide for people working within the AU system (member states, government officials) as well as the AU’s partners and the public. New Zealand’s Foreign Affairs Minister has been a regular attendee at AU Summits. See MFATs African Union Handbook page for more information. 

Use the following link 2023 African Day @ Parliament to RSVP.  In the spirit of Ubuntu, inform your friends and families who are yet to receive information about this event.