Ethiopia has intensified its efforts towards the establishment of a pan-African university that aspires to pay tribute to black people’s achievements and history, with due emphasis given to the fight against colonialism.
An international conference that envisaged to fast-track the establishment of the Adwa Pan-African University is underway in Ethiopia’s northern town of Adwa.
Ethiopia’s former Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, while addressing conference participants, has stressed the importance the Adwa Pan-African University in preserving African history and culture by focusing on Africans’ solidarity in the fight against colonialism.
Desalegn, who previously called on Ethiopians to support the establishment of the Adwa pan-African university as it mainly aspires to signify the contribution of black people from every walks of lives, also stressed the historical importance of the university for Ethiopia and Africa in general.
The Adwa Pan-Africa University is named after the battle of Adwa held in 1896, in which the less-equipped Ethiopian forces scored a victory against the colonial Italian force.
The battle of Adwa, which is also referred to as the first Ethiopia-Italian war, marks the first black victory against a colonizer force in the African continent. The war is believed to initiate other freedom fighters in the African continent to struggle towards independence.
The conference, which is also expected to discuss the design of the university, cost and public participation in the construction of the university, has also attracted the pan-African bloc’s attention.
Thomas Kwesi Quartey, African Union Commission (AUC) Deputy Chairperson, who recognized the Ethiopian government’s initiative in its cause, said that the Adwa Pan-African University signifies the battle of Adwa, which he said had helped other African countries to strengthen their struggle for freedom.
As the Ethiopian government expects a continent-wide support for the construction of the pan-African university as it signifies alliance among Africans, other African countries had recognized Ethiopia’s ambition towards establishing a pan-African university.
African leaders, including Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and former South African President Thabo Mbeki, were among the high-level officials attending the cornerstone laying ceremony for the construction of the university in the northern part of the east African country back in April 2017.
The Ethiopian government has allocated some 150 hectares of land for the construction of the Adwa Pan-African University.
The university, whose construction is scheduled to start within the coming two months period, will be constructed in Ethiopia’s Tigray regional state in the town of Adwa.