By Lawrence Okoh, Abuja.

Ahead of the meeting of African Heads of States and Government at the ongoing 38th Summit of Heads of States and Government organized by the African Union Secretariat in Adis Ababa, Ethiopia, the National Coordinator and Chief Executive Officer of NEPAD Nigeria, Hon. Princess Gloria Akobundu, has expressed optimism that the gathering of the African leaders would yield strong dividends for the continent .

The NEPAD Nigeria CEO, who is leading a delegation of NEPAD staff and other strategic consultants from across the globe that are seeking to garner technical and financial support for the many programmes and projects, which the CEO has lined of in her 2017 Timelines, in a chat with journalists in made the above revelation, Friday, in Adis Ababa where she also described this year’s Summit as unique, given the fact that, in the absence of a major political turmoil or ongoing war on the continent, almost all African leaders attending the Summit would be expected to speak with one voice.

Princess Akobundu, who described the central theme of the Summit as peace in Africa, praised the wisdom of the African leaders at arriving at such a theme since peace, she said, was a sine qua non for all strides in development to bear fruit. She said:
“We must not fail to thank our leaders in Africa for their wisdom ,which has helped in beating a solid path for Africa’s development .In the West African sub-region, we saw how the efforts of President Sir-Leaf of Liberia with the strong support of our own President Muhammadu Buhari and others, were able to calm and contain what would have been another crisis in The Gambia”.

Enjoining the citizenry to continue to support our leaders in their efforts for peace, security and development in Africa, Hon. Akobundu expressed confidence that whoever would be chosen to replace the outgoing President of the AU Commission, Mrs Nkusozana Dlamini Zuma, would harness all the efforts of the female diplomat to consolidate the gains made across the years.She also expressed hope that other leaders that would take over the administration of the different Councils and Arms of the AU in the new dispensation would be men and women of consummate honor , wisdom and strength of character.