Posted by / Wednesday 18 May 2016 / No comments

The functions of the Executive Council of the African Union

The Executive Council of the African Union is established by article 5 of the African Union Constitutive Act. The Executive Council is composed of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs or such other Ministers or Authorities as are designated by the Governments of Member States.

The Council meets at least twice a year in ordinary sessions but can also meet in an extraordinary session where it is requested by any Member State and upon approval by two-thirds of all Member States. Two-thirds of the total membership of the union constitutes a quorum at any meeting of the Executive Council.

The Council takes decisions by consensus. Where there is no consensus, the decision is taken by a two-thirds majority of the Member States but, procedural matters including the question of whether a matter is one of procedure or not, is decided by a simple majority.

Co-ordination and decision making
It is the function of the Assembly to coordinate policies and decisions in areas of common interest to the Member States. Such areas include foreign trade, education, immigration, social security, food, agriculture environmental protection, etc.

Preparation of materials
It prepares the agenda for summit meetings of the Assembly of the Union. At the summit, the agenda is discussed and approval given.

Examination of Projects
The executive Council examines projects and programmes of the Union submitted to it by the Specialized and Technical Committees of the Union. The Executive Council can also give directives to these committees.

Supervises Specialized Committee
The Specialized Committees of the Union is accountable to the Executive Council. Therefore, the Permanent representatives Committee is subject to the instructions of the Executive Council.

The Executive Council may recommend to the Assembly the establishment of other offices it considers necessary.

Advisory Role
It is the duty of the Executive Council to advise the Assembly on proposals for amendment or revision of the African Union Constitutive Act.

Implementation of Directives
It is the function of the Executive Council to implement the directives of the Assembly on the management of conflicts, war, and other emergency situations and the restoration of peace.

The Executive council has the power to consider issues referred to it by the Assembly. It also monitors the implementation of policies formulated by the Assembly.

Power of Delegation
The Executive Council has the power to delegate some of its powers and functions to the specialized Technical Committees of the Union.

1.  Write an essay of any of the following
     a. The Assembly
     b. The Executive Council
     c. The Pan-African Parliament

2. a. Describe the composition of the Executive Council of the African Union.
    b. Highlight five functions of the Executive Council.

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