APA-Addis Ababa (Ethiopia)
The 5th International Conference on Federalism (ICF) kicks off late on Monday in Addis Ababa where leaders from Rwanda, Sudan, and Somalia are attending.
The conference is being held for the first time in Africa where there are around seven countries with federalism systems of government.
Rwandan President Paul Kagame, Sudanese president Omar Al Bashir and the Prime Minister of Somalia, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed as well as Tanzanian Prime Minister, Mizengo Kayanza Peter Pinda are attending the conference, which will discuss in the next two days federalism related issues.
Prime Minister Meles Zenawi who proposed to host the conference at the Indian conference in 2008 told the gathering that the 5th International Conference on Federalism (ICF) is historical as it is held for the first time in Africa.
“Federalism systems significantly contribute towards unity of the countries. This conference is a forum to draw lessons for each country. Ethiopia is on the right track towards development in its unity in diversity,” said Meles.
He said the country has become successful since it has established a federal system, which he said is the foundation for development.
Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir said that the situation in Sudan has become better since the establishment of a federal government in the country a couple of decades ago.
Tanzanian Prime Minister, Mizengo Kayanza Peter Pinda on the occasion said good results are being registered in the process of building a federalism system in his country.
The conference on Tuesday started its deliberations on federalism and the democratization process and other related issues.
It is being held under the theme, “Equality and Unity in diversity for Development”.
Ethiopia, a federalism system country is home to around 80 million people where around 76 languages are being spoken with their own culture.