The African Union will unveil a unique African passport in February, lifting travel barriers and fulfilling an important part of the organization’s cherished pan-African ambitions.

While there has always been overwhelming agreement among Africans for greater African unity and regional integration, national differences have traditionally stood in the way, making pan-Africanism a much harder vision to realize.

But AU Commission Chairman Moussa FakiMahamat is confident that the African passport move will succeed. He said that details about implementation will be announced at the 32nd summit of the AU in February when the prototype will be unveiled.

“I am pleased to stress that, in February 2019, in Addis Abeba, at the 32nd Summit of our Union, the Commission will present, for adoption, guidelines on the design, production and issuance of the African passport, the materialization of which will take us one step closer to the long-held dream of complete free movement across the continent,” Mahamat said in a statement.

Initiated in July 2016, the African passport project has reignited a pan-African sentiment similar to the one that followed the independence of African states.

A number of observers and African citizens have spoken in support of the move, hinting at the necessity of “African Unity.”

Once fully implemented, the African passport will first be delivered to African presidents and senior officials, including foreign ministers and diplomats. Only after that will it be generalized to other officials and the general population. (Daily Monitor)