18 May 2018
UFS Africa Week to celebrate African unity

On 25 May 1963 the African continent united to form the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) which later evolved into the African Union (AU). Despite name, policy and leadership changes over the years, the core ideology of Africa’s identity and unity remain central to the AU. Hence every year on 25 May we commemorate the organisation’s establishment and celebrate the ideals for which it stands.

The university will host commemorative events daily from 22-25 May 2018 to celebrate African unity as a community. Africa Week will begin on Tuesday 22 May with the UFS Debate Society’s Africa Day Debate, followed by the Centre for Gender and Africa Studies’ Annual Africa Day Memorial Lecture presented by SAOS University of London-based scholar, Dr Rahul Rao

The Africa Day Book Launch, a collaborative effort between Library Services and the Department of English, will see the debut public appearance of Abenea Ndago’s book Voices. Under the theme: “Africans telling their own stories”, a panel will facilitate a discussion on the African authorship landscape.

At the end of the week, students will drive the Africa Day commemorative dialogue where the pivotal point will focus on 25 May as an instrument to build social justice, social cohesion and reconciliation as a vehicle to achieve unity. A team of diverse intellectual panellists including UFS Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Francis Petersen, Richard Chemaly, JC van der Merwe and Pumla Mgobhozi will share their ideologies, backgrounds and beliefs on topical issues. 

Prof Petersen asserted that, “The Africa Week commemorations are part of our endeavours to create a diverse, challenging, and intellectual environment which is part of intellectual discourse. I trust that we will generate a space where new ideas will be conceived and debated, and will assist towards a transformative university.” 

The programme for the UFS Africa Week is as follows:

The UFS Debate Society: Africa Day Debate
Tuesday 22 May 2018
Equitas Auditorium, Bloemfontein Campus

The Centre for Gender and Africa Studies Annual Africa Day Memorial Lecture
Wednesday 23 May 2018
Equitas Auditorium, Bloemfontein Campus

UFS Library Africa Day Book Launch: “Voices”
Thursday 24 May 2018
Level 2, UFS Sasol Library, Bloemfontein Campus

Africa Day commemorative dialogue
Friday 25 May 2018
Reitz Hall, Centenary Complex, Bloemfontein Campus

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