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The IUP Journal of International Relations :
Leading Pan-Africanism and Development: Nigeria’s Role in the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).
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The idea behind the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) was initiated by the leaders of Nigeria, South Africa, Senegal, Egypt and Algeria in 2001. This African Union (AU) initiative was conceived as a framework for promoting Africa’s development by addressing key social, economic and political problems. It was rooted in the ideals of Pan-Africanism and set against the backdrop of globalization and commitment to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), now superseded by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The NEPAD initiative integrates the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) as the mechanism through which the governance component of the initiative could be measured and reviewed. Among other leading member states, Nigeria has played a leading role in midwifing the process for the formulation and implementation of the initiative. It was perhaps in recognition of the country’s role that President Obasanjo was appointed as the first Chairman of the Heads of State Implementation Committee (HSIC) of NEPAD. In concrete terms, Nigeria has led other African countries in the process of giving practical form to key NEPAD programs, including the APRM. In addition to being among the first five countries to accede to the APRM, Nigeria has undertaken and completed the peer review process of the APRM. Overall, the country has provided the human and material resources that have been critical to leading the conception, establishment, promotion and ongoing implementation of the NEPAD and APRM initiatives. This paper explores the many fronts on which Nigeria has led and collaborated with other African countries to shape the vision of NEPAD. It opines that Nigeria’s role vis-ŕ-vis NEPAD is in alignment with the country’s long-standing Afro-centric foreign policy and a continuation of belief in Pan-Africanism and collective development of Africa.

 
 
 

The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) has been called by various names: a program, an initiative, a policy framework, an agenda, a concept, an idea, an integrated strategic policy and so on. No doubt, the NEPAD is all these and much more. The continental initiative was established with the formal adoption of the NEPAD Strategic Framework at the 37th Summit of the Organization of African Unity (OAU) in July 2001. Following the transformation of the OAU to the African Union (AU) in 2002, NEPAD was carried forward and integrated as the development blueprint for the continent. The NEPAD is a product of concerted efforts and relentless search by generations of African leaders to create a Pan-African development vision and framework that can lead to meaningful social, economic and political trans-formation of the continent within a rapidly globalizing world.

Among other sources of instigation, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), adopted in 2000, had aroused African leaders to the need for an African-owned, African-driven and African-centered development framework. Both the MDGs adopted in 2000 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted in 2015 reflect the moral principles that no country should be left behind in terms of development and that all countries should have a common responsibility for delivering the global vision. This need was reflected in the objectives of NEPAD, which included the desire by African countries, individually and collectively, to achieve the MDGs and to transform the social, economic and political fortune of the continent. While the ultimate focus of NEPAD is Africa, there is a strong linkage and alignment with the MDGs because the pursuit of Africa’s development should necessarily be in harmony with the global development direction. Furthermore, a deeper and more enduring impetus for the formation and implementation of NEPAD was the spirit and ideals of Pan-Africanism; a fundamental vision of a socio-politically integrated and economically developed Africa which has persistently pushed generations of African leaders to evolve visions and institutions that can help propel the continent to social and economic transformation at different times.

 
 
 

International Relations Journal,New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), African Union (AU) ,commitment to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Political, Economic and strategic dimensions, maximal stage of cooperation.