The Chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, has congratulated Ethiopia for introducing a visa on arrival regime for all African passport holders.
In a statement published on the organizations website on 11 October 11, the Commission said Mr Moussa ‘welcomes the announcement made by President Mulatu Teshome to the joint session of the House of People’s Representatives and the House of Federation of Ethiopia regarding the establishment of a visa-on-arrival regime for all African passport holders entering the country starting from the fiscal year 2018-2019’.
The Commission sees this as a big step towards efforts to introduce free movement of people across the continent. ‘The Chairperson looks forward to the day when all Africans can freely circulate in their own continent. In this respect, he underlines the need for all Member States to become parties to the January 2018 Protocol to the Treaty Establishing the African Economic Community Relating to Free Movement of Persons, Right of Residence and Right of Establishment’ the statement adds.
The AU introduced the Free Movement of People Protocol in 2017 to promote the movement of people across Africa. But so far, 32 Member States have signed the protocol, while only one Member State – Rwanda – has ratified it. Fifteen ratifications are required for the entry into force of the Protocol.