Siaroff, Alan. (2007) "Following in Europe's Footsteps? The African Union and Integration in Africa". In: UNSPECIFIED, Montreal, Canada. (Unpublished)
[From the introduction]. The African Union, which came into existence in 2002, seems in some ways to be a copy of the European Union. First of all, there is the obvious use of “Union” in the name. Secondly, the institutions of the African Union parallel those of the European Union. Specifically, the African Union has a Pan-African Parliament, an executive African Commission, an African Court of Justice, an Executive Council (to match the European Union’s Council of Ministers), and — at the apex — the Assembly of the African Union, grouping its political leaders and meeting at summits (as per the European Council). Third and finally, the future plans of the African Union include other parallels, in particular an African Central Bank. Yet the African Union as an historical-political expression differs in three key ways from the European Union: it united almost all of (independent) Africa from its roots in the Organization of African Unity, it has a clear, geographical sense of where is Africa, and it lacks democratic cohesion, the occasional suspension of a member notwithstanding. These three points will be outlined briefly in turn, in each case contrasting them with the European Union. The result is that each entity has “existential” challenges, just differing ones — ultimately greater for the African Union.
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