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Commemoration of 30 years of capacity building in Africa

17 Feb, 2021

With the vision of “An Africa Capable of Achieving Its Own Development,” the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), African Union’s specialized Agency for Capacity Development marks 30 years of capacity building in Africa.

ACBF was founded on 09 February 1991 by African countries and their development partners. The Foundation was given the mandate to build strategic partnerships, offer technical support, and provide access to relevant knowledge related to capacity building in Africa.

To date, ACBF has empowered Governments, Parliaments, Civil Society Organizations, Private Sector and Institutions of higher learning in over 48 African countries and eight Regional Economic Communities (RECs). The Foundation supports capacity development through skills and institutional development, technical assistance and advisory support, funds administration, project management and knowledge generation and sharing across Africa.

Having laid several foundations and delivered significant interventions in areas that include science, technology, engineering, economic growth, policy, public service delivery, gender, media excellence, climate change, creation of Think Tanks and strengthening of institutions among others, the Foundation looks forward to contributing more interventions and capacity solutions for the continent. 

Reflecting on 30 years of capacity building in Africa, Professor Emmanuel NNADOZIE, the Executive Secretary of ACBF said “for us, 30 years is a great milestone. We look back with absolute pride to the demonstrated achievements we have recorded over the three decades. We continue to serve with a strengthened mandate following African Union’s recognition and endorsement as its specialized agency for capacity development.”

“We remain grateful to all our Member States and technical and financial Partners, for the meaningful support to our continental development journey. We look forward to continued and new partnerships as we redouble our efforts to support Africa’s capacity development agenda. We take this opportunity to again congratulate beneficiaries of the ACBF interventions and call on them to ensure that their gains continue to benefit their communities.”

The Foundation says going forward, its delivery will border on the integration agenda enshrined in the #Agenda2063, which can only be achieved with commitment to the timely planning, technical and financial resources as well as the political will and devotion to the continent’s capacity building agenda.

In celebrating the milestone, ACBF will host a series of activities throughout the year, to share its success story with stakeholders and the rest of the world. The Foundation will also continue to support the capacity building initiatives in Africa, with a focus on emerging stronger from the effects of Covid19.


Thomas Kwesi Quartey

ACBF has been granted the status of a specialized agency because of the potential to transform Africa through capacity development.

H.E. Thomas Kwesi Quartey, Deputy Chairperson, AU Commission
Erastus Mwencha

The recognition of ACBF as the African Union’s Specialized Agency for Capacity Development launches the beginning of a new era for capacity building by ACBF, which will require an appropriate level of political commitment and financial support from all stakeholders.

H.E. Erastus Mwencha, Chair, ACBF Executive Board
Lamin Momodou

The remarkable achievements ACBF has registered over the past 26 years is not by accident in our opinion. They have come through hard work, dedication, commitment, purposeful leadership, support from the member countries as well as productive partnership building.

Mr. Lamin Momodou MANNEH, Director, UNDP Regional Service Centre for Africa
Goodall Gondwe

Africa needs ACBF as much, probably more now, than at the time it was created in 1991.

Hon. Goodall Gondwe, former Chair of the ACBF Board of Governors and Minister of Finance – Malawi
Ken Ofori Atta

Ghana’s partnership with ACBF is a tremendous blessing for us and therefore the opportunity for Ghana to host the 26th ACBF Board of Governors Meeting is something that we treasure.

Hon Ken Ofori Atta, Chair of the ACBF Board of Governors and Minister of Finance - Ghana