Celebration of Africa Liberation Day and the International Year for People of African Descent
01 June 2011
The Permanent Observer of the African Union to the United Nations (UN) in partnership with the United Nations Senior Africans Group and the African Diaspora hosted an event at the UN on 31 May to celebrate African Liberation Day. The Day holds particular significance this year because the UN General Assembly assigned 2011 as the International Year for People of African Descent. The theme for the year’s event was: Forging closer links between Africa and the Diaspora.
“We are looking towards the great future that the continent can deliver for its people and to the world,” said Ambassador Tete Antonio, Permanent Observer of the African Union to the UN ahead of the event. “There is much to be done, and much that we who are the sons and daughters of Africa can do to build the continent and to build our countries and communities that form this great Diaspora.”
“Coming one week before the 2011 High Level Meeting on AIDS, this day offers a major platform to galvanize Africa, the Diaspora and the international community around the twin engine of assessing the work that has been achieved in the past 30 years of the AIDS epidemic and re-committing the international community to global solidarity and partnership building to move the AIDS agenda forward,” said Dr Djibril Diallo, Chairman of the Host Committee for the Africa Day Celebration and Senior Advisor to the Executive Director of UNAIDS.
We are looking towards the great future that the continent can deliver for its people and to the world
Ambassador Tete Antonio, Permanent Observer of the African Union to the UN
Speakers at the event also included Ambassador Joy U. Ogwu, Permanent Representative of Nigeria to the UN, Representative of the African Group and Chair for the Month of May; Maria Luiza Ribeiro Viotti, Permanent Representative of Brazil to the United Nations; Bill Perkins, New York State Senator; Professor Iba Der Thiam, Writer/Historian, First Vice President, National Assembly of Senegal; the Rev. Jesse Jackson, Rainbow PUSH Coalition; Dr Julius Garvey, Pan Africanism and the United States of Africa; Vanessa Williams, Executive Director, National Conference of Black Mayors; and Uchenwa Njokwu, Youth Leader and President of NGO Flaunt Africa.
African Liberation Day is commemorated on 25 May every year in many countries in Africa.