The Assistant Controller & Accountant General at Ministry of Chieftaincy and Religious Affairs, Dr. Doliwura Zakaria, has been elected as the Steering Committee Chairman for the Africa Union Commission’s (AUC) Interfaith Dialogue Forum (IFDF) 2023.
The international honour was done him when he represented the Government and people of Ghana at the 4th AU-IFDF in Kigali, Rwanda.
Dr. Zakaria is expected to oversee the functions, day-to-day activities and overall impact and engagement of the Forum.
The event served as a crucial platform for deliberations on pertinent issues affecting the African continent and explored the potential contributions of faith-based institutions in addressing these challenges.
Mode of election
The electoral process that elevated Dr. Zakaria to his new international role unfolded through meticulous considerations.
Representatives from the 55 African countries were categorized into five distinct zones: North Africa, West Africa (ECOWAS), Southern Africa, Eastern Africa, and Central Africa. Each zone was tasked with electing two members to serve a 4-year term on the Steering Committee.
Additionally, a significant step toward inclusivity saw the selection of a youth representative from Mauritius and a women’s representative from Rwanda, expanding the Committee’s breadth of perspectives.
The 12 selected members were entrusted with the responsibility of electing a chairman and a vice-chairman from their ranks. Dr. Zakaria’s election as the Chairman marks not only his international personal achievement but also signifies the collective confidence of his peers in his ability to guide the Steering Committee effectively.
The Steering Committee’s mandate comes into immediate effect, propelling Dr. Zakaria into a leadership role with far-reaching implications for fostering interfaith dialogue and cooperation across the African continent.
AU- IFDF Assembly
The forum, which was under the theme “Faith in Harvest: Sowing Seeds of Climate Resilience”, was organised by theAfrican Union Commission, in collaboration with The King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz International Centre for Intercultural and Interreligious Dialogue (KAICIID).
This crucial event brought together faith leaders, policymakers, youth representatives, farmers, and stakeholders from across Africa to address the urgent challenges of climate change and food security in the continent.
The IFDF Assembly 2023 focused on the critical role of faith communities in addressing climate change and its impact on food security. The assembly further explored innovative solutions, shared best practices, and advocated for policy changes to create a sustainable and resilient future for Africa.
The AU-IFDF was established in 2010 with the mandate of creating a continent-wide inclusive and representative body of faith-based organizations (FBOs), figures and entitles to harness their efforts to support African Union programmes and activities and have a voice and impact on policies and development work.
Specifically, the AU-IFDF has had a key interest in playing a role alongside the relevant AU bodies in conflict prevention and peacebuilding, advocating and promoting human rights, promoting a common understanding of interfaith and intra faith dialogue.
It also provides suitable grounds for informing its members of the development agenda and environmental protection, engaging in humanitarian action, and championing the causes of youth, women, and children.
A Steering Committee of the forum was elected in 2016 and 2018 respectively to form the core governing body of the forum develop and oversee the functions, day to day activities and overall impact and engagement of the Forum.