The membership of the Polisario separatist front in the African Union is anomaly that should be corrected by ejecting the Algerian client group from the continental organization, former Liberian foreign minister Gbehzohngar Milton Findley said.
Findley, who was speaking at a seminar in Accra, joined his voice to that of numerous African leaders and states including 28 AU member states who submitted a motion calling for a freeze of Polisario’s membership in the organization prior to Morocco’s return.
The Polisario is a “non-state actor” and should not have a full fledged membership in the African Union which, Milton Findley said, should maintain neutrality in the Sahara conflict.
The admission of SADR, a self-proclaimed entity by the Polisario with Algeria’s sponsorship, took place at a “particular context” when the predecessor of the AU was torn between ideological trends that are now anachronistic.
Morocco left the organization of the African Unity in reaction to the admission of the Polisario in 1984. Since then, Algeria used the comfort of not having Morocco’s voice to pass resolutions serving the separatist cause going as far as using the most important body in the African organization, the Peace and Security Council, to serve Algiers hegemonic agenda under the cover of supporting Polisario’s separatism.
But the winds of change have blown on the African Union with the triumphal return of Morocco in 2017. Since then, Rabat managed step by step to correct the bias of the organization and make its voice heard to the disappointment of Algeria and the few remaining countries rallying behind its agenda to unsettle Morocco through the Polisario militias.
So far, some 30 countries, mostly African, opened consulates in Laayoune or Dakhla in a show of total support for Morocco’s sovereignty over the territory.
Morocco’s presence within the continental organization served as a bulwark against separatist plots and together with its numerous friends managed to push the African Union to recognize that the Sahara peace process is an exclusive domain of the UN, barring thus the road for Algiers as it seeks to pressure the African Union into a mediation role.
The African Union cannot simply mediate on the Sahara issue because by having the Polisario as a member, it has prejudged the outcome of the peace talk process which stresses the preeminence of the Moroccan autonomy initiative.
The withdrawal of the Polisario requires a resolution with two-thirds of votes. Now that vote seems at hand for Morocco which has fostered ties with countries from all corners of Africa.
Building on a pro-active foreign policy and multi-layered cooperation based on a solidarity-oriented approach and win-win projects, Morocco stands in stark contrast to the cash hand out policy adopted by Algeria and formerly by Gaddafi’s Libya to buy support in the continent.
Not only in Africa where Morocco’s faithful supporters are located, the sands globally are shifting in favor of Morocco’s autonomy initiative.
The recognition of the US of Morocco’s sovereignty over the Sahara has sent shockwaves in favor of Morocco’s position.
The membership of the Polisario within the African Union stands as an aberration that prejudged the outcome of negotiations in total disregard for the UN process and for Morocco’s historical rights as a country that was divided by two colonial powers.