Julius Mwalimu Nyerere, President of Tanzania
Birth of a Unique Independent Media Group
AU Watch News is the leading African based digital media source of news and content, an online magazine and website, daily news updates and weekly e-newsletter.We provide the most comprehensive reporting on the AU and its Members. This is our daily news magazine providing news, articles, op-eds, authoritative analysis and up-to-date commentary on current AU topics and matters.
Presenting our information through analysis, reviews, photos, features, interviews, case studies, critiques, surveys and research, AU Watch News is a daily exploration of the intersection of AU business, finance and politics. We report on a broad range of AU issues from across strategic areas such as development, human rights, social justice, trade, anti-corruption, financial information, business leadership, IT, science and technology, energy, banking, marketing and finance, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), shipping, aviation, executive education, life style, business travel and many more.
AU Watch News, dedicated 24/7 multi-platform news service is Africa’s authoritative Pan-African media, pioneering multilingual and independent news telling in Africa. We have correspondents from all over the world who on topical issues concerning the AU and its Pan-African dream of a united Africa and Agenda 2063 vision.
As you might have noticed, AU Watch carries out our mandate through the media and press – television, radio, internet, AU Watch News, AU Watch Online radio, AU Watch TV,AU Watch Podcast and much more. Our flagship AU Watch 24-hour digital TV channel is available almost everywhere in the world.
AU Watch News, will be broadcasting by satellite all over Africa, offering tailor-made programmes, live streaming, VOD and interactive services on internet and mobile devices.With input from local news analysts, editors, journalists, funders, and other stakeholders, AU Watch News is innovating the news, starting with the reality that the Internet is transforming the dynamics of local news and providing remarkable new opportunities for public engagement. We are also planning for a monthly hard copy. Please stay tuned!
AU Watch News was founded by Dr Feyi Ogunade, in the wake of the Executive Council’s 25th African Union Summit 2015 decision ordering the African Commission to reverse its decision to grant Observer Status to an LGBT organisation, the Coalition of Africa Lesbians.The African Commission had given Observer Status to the Coalition of African Lesbians during its 56th Ordinary Session of the Commission, held in Banjul, The Gambia, on 25 April 2015.
On 8 August 2018, the African Commission stripped the Coalition of African Lesbians of its Observer Status. The main human rights organ of Africa lost its independence. It was an unprecedented interference in the day-to-day operations of the key human rights organ of the AU that is supposed to be promoting and protecting human rights in Africa. Millions of Africans had no idea of the events. AU Watch News was born to help mitigate or even prevent future disasters of that magnitude by informing and giving hourly reports of what is going on in the AU.
Almost two years later, we became an independent non-profit news organisation for AU Watch, allowing us to cast a more critical eye over what the AU and its Members are doing drawing attention to its successes and its failures. As digital disinformation went global, and mainstream media retreated from holding the AU and its Members accountable our field-based, high-quality journalism filled even more of a gap. Today, we are one of only a handful of newsrooms world-wide specialised in covering the AU and its Members – and in holding them accountable to the standards they have set for themselves.
A new dimension for Pan-African news magazine launches on December 2020.
The People Behind The News
We are a team of journalists, correspondents, online community editors, social community managers, technical and administrative staff, from all over the world working together to produce simultaneously in English and French up-to-the-minute news. More languages to come.
AU Watch News is available on TV, on social networks and on au-watchnews.org. The website’s fully responsive design is suitable for mobiles and tablets.
Even though AU Watch News is a 100% subsidiary of AU Watch and financed through commercial revenues, it has a total editorial freedom, with no influence from AU Watch itself, institutions, states, companies, persons. We guard our independence jealously.
What We Do
Do you understand the Pan-African Agenda 2063 vision and the Pan-African dream of a united Africa? AU Watch puts quality, independent journalism about the AU, its Members and its services at the service of the millions of Africans. We report from the bowels of the AU to inform all of us what is going on in Addis and wherever the AU and its Members leave a foot print.
AU Watch News provides up-to-date information and analysis of the major economic and development challenges facing the AU and its Members today. It examines the many issues confronting the AU, its Members, the citizens of Africa: Pan-Africanism and the concept of a united Africa, human rights, Agenda 2063 programs, economic reform, debt, education, health, women’s advancement, conflict and civil strife, rule of law and democratization, aid, investment, trade, regional integration, rural development and many other topics. It works with the AU, various international and national media in Africa and beyond to promote the work of AU Watch and its partners.
As the trusted news source on AU matters, we deliver the authentic, inside story from withing the cauldron of the AU. Our reporting gives insight to the AU itself, its Members, policymakers, civil society, practitioners and others who want to create then Africa we all want.
Your News Platform
This is your platform to discuss challenges faced by Africa. AU Watch News promotes constructive leadership and engagement in regional and international affairs based on the AU Watch’s central role in addressing regional challenges. AU Watch News provides a platform for understanding the diverse, yet perplexing economic and political landscape of Africa by galvanising its exclusively influential network of journalists, commentators, analysts, regional leaders, researchers, and scholars craft innovative responses to the most pressing challenges facing the AU, its Members and its peoples.
It is your platform to join in the AU debate and project, empowering all of us not only to ask questions of our leaders and take control of our own lives, but also to demand social justice and to ensure that all of us contribute to the AU dream of a truly united, peaceful and prosperous Africa. We especially offer Africa’s youths and the general public, but especially some of Africa’s most excluded communities a platform to challenge the AU and its Members and hold those in power to account. Our publications, television, radio and digital programs engage officials and people in open debates and discussions and encourage communication across political, ethnic, religious and other social divides.
Why, so often, is Africa unable to tell its own stories? The demand for unbiased African voices has never been met. We intend to fill a gap – to give first hand, undiluted information, news and analysis about the AU and its Members. We empower citizens of Africa by providing a platform for people whose voices are often unheard to engage the AU, share their stories and question their leaders.
Original reporting, informed dialogue, and sharp debate all contribute to a healthy democracy in local communities. But local news outlets are dwindling as audiences and advertisers shift to digital and mobile platforms, often with a smaller footprint — leaving media deserts in locations where coverage once flourished. Promising online local journalism experiments are cropping up all over the continent.We are therefore seizing upon the moment to invest in innovative outlets as well as tools and models that reduce reporting costs and support civic engagement around AU breaking news.
Local News & Participation
Empoweringand inspiring people through independent and reliable news.
AU Watch News On Air, Online, All the Time
Well …. we report the ALL news about the AU. Our objective is simple. We bring the news about the AU and its Members right up your street. Working with on-the-ground editors, reporters, correspondents, analysts and commentators from all over Africa with more than an intimate knowledge of Africa, AU Watch reports from the inner sanctuary of the AU. Our reporting informs what the AU and its Members say they are doing on our behalf, amplifies the voices of ordinary African citizens on the ground and holds our states managers and policy chiefs to account.
Our coverage takes a holistic view of all what the AU and its Members are doing, from elections, governance, anti-corruption, emerging conflicts to the human face of climate change, from refugee movements to disease outbreaks. We also cover the policy and practice of development, human rights, social justice, and trade, Africa’s youth, women – well basically everything the AU and its Members are doing. We are there before, during and after, providing 24-hour coverage long after most camera crews have packed up and left. We are committed to Africa, keeping neglected news in the news and amplifying the work of ‘Africa.’
In addition to our daily multimedia news reports, we curate in-depth topical collections of our coverage and feature diverse voices in opinion essays, Q&As and interviews. We highlight our work in newsletters, webinars and special events.
Why Our Work Is Important
Recent Afro-barometer public-opinion surveys reveal that, after more than 50 years of the establishment of the O/AU project, hundreds of millions of Africans have a very negative view of the AU. A 2014, 2016 and 2018 scientific poll conducted by AU Watch in ten African countries and in two European countries revealed the shocking extent of the ignorance about the AU, its institutions, and its programs. Even for those who had some limited knowledge about the AU, including very highly educated and supposedly informed people, the level of distrust and cynicism about the AU is worrying. For example, the survey revealed that nearly ninety-one per cent of the people polled thought the AU is a useless, organisation and nothing more than a bureaucratic talking shop for many of Africa’s dictators. Many called it “spineless” and not fit for purpose. Many want to see it abolished as it had no meaningful effect on their lives.
As Africans how do we change those views? A casual examination will reveal that most development process in Africa has been mainly state-centered, “a top-down” process. Development strategies and we dare say political processes in many African countries, lack the involvement of civil society, even though its participation is crucial in ensuring democratic legitimacy. The Constitutive Act of the AU refers to the creation of space for the inclusion and participation of civil society in its processes. Various advocacy opportunities for civil society are also provided for in the structures of the AU. So, through our programs and projects, including AU Watch News we aim to:
1. Provide a platform for citizens to be a meaningful part of the AU project, empowering all of us not only to demand accountability from our leaders, but also to ask questions and demand social justice. AU Watch News provides a space for all Africans to contribute to the AU dream of a truly united, peaceful and prosperous Africa, including acting as a forum for the AU to reach the masses. We offer Africa’s women, youths and especially some of Africa’s most excluded communities a space to question the AU and hold those in power to account and be part of the discussions about the type of AU ‘we’ want (that is, if we want an AU at all!) and how the AU and AUMS can create effective institutions in Africa that allows meaningful participation by the populace.
2. By reporting, commenting and analysing news and events we Develop and support conversations about how the AU and AUMS can be ‘encouraged’ to implement the decisions they take.
3. Concretely contribute to good governance, human rights, anti-corruption and development issues in the continent.
4. AU Watch News provides an alternative viewpoint about the AU, whilst also conveying information about the AU, serving as a public education tool.
AU Watch News holds the view that by bringing all of us into the conversation about the type of AU we want, we are empowering all of us to determine the Africa we want to see by 2063. It is our view that all of us, including friends of Africa, can assist the AU to once more become the principal and respected African forum for promoting good governance, democracy, human rights, multidimensional security and the advancement of sustainable and inclusive development.
AU Watch News contributes to more effective and accountable Africa. We do so in three ways:
• Our journalism informs AU & AU MS decision-makers in all the areas where the AU has a mandate, by accurately and timeously reporting what is going on inside Africa, as far as the AU and its Members are concerned. Our stories have directly instigated, influenced and informed action.
• Our journalism acts as a catalyst for policy change within the AU that has few independent voices of critique and analysis.By challenging dominant narratives and exposing inconsistencies, corruption and system failures,our reporting leads to concrete changes. By keeping their feet close to the fire our reports have forced both the AU and its Members to stay faithful to the promises they have made to us.
• Our journalism raises awareness among engaged general publics. AU Watch News reports, challenges and holds to account the AU and States Parties to the Constitutive Act to live up to the standards and ideals they have set for themselves. We believe AU leadership is essential in the regional struggle for security, development, and human rights, so we press the AU and its states managers to respect the laws they create and the treaties they sign. Our reporting empowers people and communities to have the power to claim their basic human rights, to escape poverty, injustice, and misrule. AU Watch News understands that media and communication can have a deep and positive result on the lives of people – especially on the poor and vulnerable, so we challenge our states managers and big businesses that abuse or mismanage their own power. We lead advocacy campaigns challenging bad / wrong policies and practices.