African Union Compendium

As part of our capacity building and information sharing mandate on the African Union, Oxfam Liaison Office with the African Union has published the most comprehensive manual on the AU structures and organs: The African Union Compendium.

The Compendium, covers the AU structures, its various organs, departments and divisions of the AU Commission, the representational specialized and technical offices of the AU, the decision making processes of the Union, the meeting and summits organizing processes, civil society space in the AU and the role these various civil society actors have been playing, and more.

The African Union Compendium is intended for multiple stakeholders including, but not limited to Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), policymakers at various levels, AU and embassy staff, academics, staff of Regional Economic Communities (RECs), and journalists among others.

In the past, there have been a number of guides and manuals on the AU, with useful information for civil society and other actors seeking to engage the continental body namely 'Civil Society Organizations and the African Union: Towards a Continental Advocacy Strategy by World Vision' (2007), 'Towards a People Driven African Union: Current Obstacles and New Opportunities' by Oxfam, AfriMAP and AFRODAD, and as well as another titled 'Strengthening Popular Participation in the African Union: A Guide to African Union Structures and Processes' by Oxfam and AfriMAP.

However, with the African Union Compendium, a holistic approach was adopted in the gathering of information on the institution and a method of organizing information about the African Union, its organs, structures, mechanisms that offer both an overview for understanding as well as a comprehensive reference for in-depth insight.

In preparing the African Union Compendium, we have made use of publicly available official AU documents, policy instruments, key presentations by AU departmental experts, internet research and research work that has taken into account available information.  

Oxfam and its partners are committed to the vision and objectives of the African Union, and continue their engagement with the continental body through different efforts of popularizing the African Union, and supporting it to promote the implementation of the various policy instruments that will in essence render better conditions of life for the citizens of the continent.

Oxfam presents the new 'African Union Compendium' to the Chairperson of the AU Commission, Dr. Jean Ping during the July 2012 AU Summit. Photo: Oxfam
Oxfam presents the new 'African Union Compendium' to the Chairperson of the AU Commission, Dr. Jean Ping during the July 2012 AU Summit. Photo: Oxfam