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Ladies and Gentlemen, dear friends of CAFRAD

The current health situation that the world is going through represents a moment of great upheaval in the life of our institutions, of ours, as well as that of our respective countries. This is an opportunity for us to readjust our way of deploying ourselves and to rethink in a profound way our relationship with our institutions and our countries and also to put above all, our duty of solidarity in the respect of the measures advised by our authorities and in particular the specialized health services.

It is also an opportunity here, to review the way in which our missions should be understood and carried out, in an environment of such great instability. It is important that each of us takes the measure of his/her responsibilities and that each, in his/her own way, does his/her fair share thereof.

There was a preCovid-19 era and there will be another after, but it is today that all of this must be prepared in a resolute and determined manner. This is why, in union with all the international institutions, and in union with all the authorities of the member and non-member states, I would like to express all the solidarity of CAFRAD, in this adventure of the fight for the lives of men and women, who, every day, give their best, in order to offer us an ever better quality of life, despite the pitfalls and obstacles that mark out this noble mission.

Therefore, I would like here to pay tribute to the administrative and health authorities of our various countries, who have to face ever new challenges, in this difficult context, with their dedication and courage.

I would also like to express to all our member countries which have lost loved ones during this pandemic, the sincerest solidarity of CAFRAD and my personal solidarity in this period of great questions about the deep meaning of our common existence in particular and of life in general. I am thinking in particular of the former ministers of the Republic of Guinea and the Republic of the Congo, who left us abruptly during this year.

It is also the place here to tell the various actors in the adventure of reforming our administrative and governance institutions, that our mission continues. We do not have to rest on our oars, because the public service of our continent should continue to remain our mission and the continual improvement of its quality a duty for ourselves as well as for all our populations.

A few years ago we started the Responsible Public Governance project. It was like a daring adventure then, so much did it shake up the convictions of yesteryear. Today, there is no longer any doubt about the relevance of our approach. It is a question of taking the full measure of it and ensuring that our continent is more consumer of its own concepts and inspires more others instead of being only the passive repository of experiences whose relevance is not always proven.

I would also like to avail myself of this opportunity, to reiterate all the joys we have today to meet next to the highest international institutions, the awareness that there is no progress except through effort and the useful confrontation of ideas, far from self-centred and exclusivist approaches sometimes based solely on outdated representations.

The world in which we develop today, and the one we are building for generations to come, will be built on the basis of the values ​​of respect for the complexity of the world and the right for all to a better quality of life. This is why our continent is called upon more than ever so that we know how to free ourselves from the backward-looking patterns of our existence, by privileging more than ever, the respect for ourselves and the respect for our lives, our peoples, our traditions and cultures.

We will also have to free ourselves from our doubts and our fears of building our Administrations and our States, on the basis of patterns rooted in our deep values ​​and open to the world and its complexities and not in the rejection or denial of other spaces, but ultimately to build a more united and less unfair world.

This is our mission today and it is our duty of generosity to future generations. The old world every day goes away; let’s be aware of it and let’s take full measure of it. Our institution is playing its full part and intends to contribute to it in its own way. This is why we have carried out, with the support of the African Development Bank (ABD), a large-scale study which should lead us to a complete transformation in the coming months. Projects are underway and new missions too.

We count on the support of States and partners for the achievement of this necessary transformation, which will have to translate into a new vision, which will inspire the transformations that we would like to see appear in our respective countries.

It is in this way that we will be able to say with legitimate pride that we did our part when we were asked to do so, with respect for the legacy received from the founding fathers. But in order to do that, we will still need, as I have indicated on a few occasions already, to free ourselves from ourselves and ’free our minds and our administration from the ethics of the master’. Assuming our task as servants and facilitators, such seems to me to be the mission incumbent upon us and of which we must be worthy and proud every day.

This is how we will make Africa a land of which future generations will be proud; an Authentic and Responsible land, a land of refuge and great fraternity.