The Association of African Universities (AAU) has reiterated its commitment to continue working with stakeholders towards attaining the goals of the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063 and the Continental Education Strategy for Africa (CESA).
Professor Etienne Ehouan Ehile, General Secretary, AAU, urged all stakeholders to continue working synergistically among themselves and with other key partners, including African governments, education ministries and development partners to support the continental agenda.
He also urged them to work with the various continental higher education frameworks, with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in mind, as their achievements were tied intrinsically to the development of the African continent.
Prof Ehile made the remarks during the celebration of the African Universities’ Week in Accra on the theme “The Africa We Want: The Role of Young People”.
In commemoration of this year’s African Universities’ Week, the AAU has put together a rich bouquet of events including; Chancellors Forum and Round Table, and High Level Panel Discussions on topical issues.
Prof Ehile said this year’s celebration had been innovative by focusing on the youth as reflected by the theme.
“This theme was aptly chosen to bring to fore, the critical role the youth need to play influencing policy legislative and social changes; disrupting the status quo; and taking on a more active role in ensuring we attain the ‘Africa we want’ by 2063,” he said.
“It draws its inspiration from the overall vision for Africa based on the aspirations of the African countries as articulated in the Agenda 2063.”
Prof Ehile said higher education played a significant role in the transformation of society through knowledge creation exchange and sharing for sustainable development.
He said it was therefore, very vital that institutions of higher learning in Africa played a strategic role in achieving the Pan African vision of an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa, driven by its own citizens and representing a dynamic force in the global arena.
Prof Ehile announced that the next AAU’s Conference of Rectors, Vice Chancellors and Presidents of African Higher Education (COREVIP) would come off from 8 to 11 July 2019 in Cairo Egypt.
He further called on all higher education institutions AAU member and development partners to collaborate with them in hosting the Cairo Conference successfully.
Professor Kwesi Yankah, Minister of State in-charge of Tertiary Education called for the harmonisation of higher education in Africa to help promote academics and to facilitate professional mobility of staff and students.
“The very nature of a modern day university compels internationalisation. For regardless of location, universities today undertake research in a wide variety of disciplines targeted at issues that transcend local interests and may arouse intellectual curiosity throughout the world,” Prof Yankah stated.
“Based on the assumption of an interconnected world universities not only have a multipurpose agenda; they address both local and global issues and encourage the institution of academic curricular that are not static, but are responsive to changes in global intellectual trends.”
Prof Ahmed Mohamed Suleiman, Vice Chancellor, University of Khartoum, Sudan, led a delegation of 21 Sudanese Vice Chancellors to the week-long celebration in Accra.
He said, they would continue to strengthen the existing relationship between Sudanese Universities and other sister African Universities.