"We are passionate about realising the ideal of quality education for all children; indeed, investing in education is the best investment any nation can make in its own future," said EI General Secretary Fred van Leeuwen, drawing attention to the shortfall in the efforts towards achieving Education for All. He adressed the EI Africa Regional Committee (EIARC), which held its annual meeting in Brazzaville from 28th to 30th April.
Apart from van Leeuwens update on developments of the status of teachers’ recommendations at international level, the meeting received reports from various African zones. Oftentimes, these reports highlighted the difficulty in communication and the turnover in leadership in unions as some of the problems hampering the activities on the ground.
A further point for discussion was the need to rejuvenate trade union education programmes. While much progress has been made with professional development programmes like the EI EFAIDS Programme, these efforts should, the Committee concluded, be pursued and intensified in the future. In order to promote unity among unions and avoid a cacophony of voices within the countries in the region, the committee members called for more scrutiny of new applications to pre-empt a further division of EI affiliates.
The meeting agreed to hold the next Africa Regional Conference in Congo Brazzaville between 22nd and 26th November 2010 under the theme "Unity for Sustainable Investment in Quality Public Education for Africa." As part of the preparations for the conference meetings were held with key Government officials who pledged to cooperate with EI and its affiliate in Congo Brazzaville (FETRASSEIC) to ensure the success of the conference.