The Commission for Africa was set up by Tony Blair in early 2004. The Commission had seventeen members, nine of which were from Africa, all working in their individual and personal capacities.
The Commission published its report “Our Common Interest” on 11 March 2005. It recognised that everyone would benefit from – and has a role in creating – a strong and prosperous Africa. It put forward a coherent package of measures to achieve this goal.
Many of its recommendations were taken forward by the G8 when they met in Gleneagles in July 2005 and in other major African and international commitments made in 2005.
2010 is a perfect time for us to revisit those recommendations to find out what progress has been made and what more needs to be done. It is the year when the world’s eyes will turn to Africa as it hosts the football World Cup for the first time. It is also the year when the world will ask itself if and how it is going to achieve its goal of halving poverty by 2015.
Many others will be campaigning for a strong and prosperous Africa in 2010. Our aim is to work with them to encourage the world to take the steps required to fulfil our common interest in the creation of a strong and prosperous Africa.
Over the course of the summer, we will be reviewing progress against our recommendations and highlighting what needs to happen next to push them forward. In September, we will publish a short report on our findings.
The Commissioners will be supported by a small secretariat made up of two members of the original secretariat – Myles Wickstead and Claire Hickson – and the consultancy Development Initiatives, with research input from the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Sussex.
We are supported in this work by GSK.