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    Kenya-AU-Diplomacy

    Kenya: Odinga appointed AU high representative for infrastructure development

    APA-Nairobi (Kenya)

    Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga was on Saturday appointed by the African Union as the High Representative for Infrastructure Development in Africa.

    The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, said the decision is part of the African Union’s drive to expedite the integration of the continent through infrastructure, in order to promote economic growth and sustainable development.

    “This decision is part of the African Union’s drive to expedite the integration of the continent through infrastructure, in order to promote economic growth and sustainable development,” he said in a statement issued in Nairobi.

    “It comes against the backdrop of renewed efforts in this regard, as exemplified by the adoption last March in Kigali (Rwanda) of the Agreement on the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and the Protocol on Free Movement of Persons and the African Passport, as well as by the launching of the Single African Air Transport Market (SAATM) in Addis Ababa in January 2018,” he added.

    Odinga is now expected to work to support and strengthen the efforts of the Commission’s relevant Departments and those of the Planning and Coordinating Agency of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), within the framework of the Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA), which was endorsed by the Assembly of the Union in January 2012.

    His mandate includes mobilizing further political support from member states and the Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and facilitating greater ownership by all concerned stakeholders on the continent. He will also support the Commission and NEPAD initiatives to encourage increased commitment from development partners.

    Odinga is expected to pay particular attention to the missing links along the transnational highway corridors identified as part of the Trans-African Highways Network, with a view to facilitating their development and modernization.

    He will also focus on the continental high-speed train, which is one of the flagship projects of the First Ten-Year Implementation Plan of Agenda 2063, in the context of the relevant African Union decisions.

    He will also interact with the current Champions of related African Union initiatives and seek their guidance, to ensure the required synergy and coherence.


    JK/afm/APA

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