On the occasion of Africa Day, His Excellency Sheikh Shakhboot bin Nahyan Al Nahyan, Minister of State, delivered welcoming remarks at a special event held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The event celebrated the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU), now known as the African Union (AU), as well as the rich history, culture, heritage, and contributions of African nations to the international community across a range of fields, including art and culture, tourism, technology, research, and more. The event was attended by a number of distinguished guests, including H.E. Mohammed Dansanta Rimi, the Nigerian Ambassador to the UAE.
H.E. Sheikh Shakhboot bin Nahyan spoke about the cultural significance of Africa Day and the UAE's commitment to strengthening its partnerships with African nations by stating: "Africa Day represents a momentous occasion to celebrate the rich cultural heritage and history of African nations, as well as their important contributions to the global community. The UAE has long-standing relationships and people-to-people ties with African nations, and we remain committed to working with our partners to promote peace, stability, and development across the continent.”
His Excellency continued: “Our respective leaderships have always been committed to nurturing the bonds of friendship that exist between our nations, and it is through these exchanges that we have developed a deep appreciation and respect for each other's cultural values and traditions.”
“Today, as we celebrate Africa Day, let us take a moment to reflect on the elements that have bound us together throughout history. And let us regard this as an opportunity to highlight our commitment to working together to build even stronger partnerships, grounded in shared values of mutual respect, transparency, and cooperation,” His Excellency concluded.
H.E. Mohammed Dansanta Rimi, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to the UAE, stated: On the occasion of Africa Day and the 60th anniversary of the African Union as an institution, let me use this opportunity to express our profound gratitude and appreciation to the Government of the United Arab Emirates for hosting the Group as well as celebrating this unique day with us. As the Principal Representatives of our respective countries, it is part of our cardinal responsibilities to promote political, economic, and socio-cultural partnerships that will lead to the realisation of mutual benefits. I have no doubt that today’s occasion will provide us with the opportunity to expand the scope of our relationship. It will also give us the opportunity to interact and explore areas of common interest; with such interactions, strong bonds are bound to flourish.
Attendees discussed the significance of Africa Day in fostering greater collaboration between the UAE and African nations and advancing common interests. In celebration of Africa Day, several UAE landmarks, including the Abu Dhabi Exhibition Centre, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company’s headquarters, Burj Khalifa, Dhayah Fort, House of Wisdom, Jebel Jais, and the Sheikh Zayed Bridge were illuminated in the colours of the Pan-African flag.
Africa Day also marked the beginning of a week-long art exhibition at Dubai’s Emirates Towers which will feature contemporary and traditional artworks created by African artists. The exhibition will be available to the public from May 25th until June 1st.