n Institute for Security Studies Papers - Sovereignty and the 'United States of Africa' : insights from the EU

Volume 2007, Issue 144
  • ISSN : 1026-0404



Member states of the African Union have proposed an ambitious integration effort designed to create a continental government. The success of such a bid will be dependent on the resolution of various legal, political and economic issues that are crucial to a government of this nature. One of the fundamental questions that states have to deal with is the extent to which they are willing to cede sovereign powers they currently enjoy to a continental body or government to enable it to achieve their common objectives. Comparable experiences from the European Union institutional framework illustrate that enhanced economic and political unity demands closer cooperation and self-sacrifice that sometimes conflict with traditional notions of state sovereignty. In this paper the concept of sovereignty is discussed as well as the extent to which states have been willing to and will be ready to transfer some of their sovereignty to an overarching institution in a bid to form a solid and effective supranational governmental body.

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