Delaware State University recently signed an accord to become a strategic partner to the African Peer Review Mechanism to academically assist in 21st-century African development.

The APRM was founded in 2002 as a specialized agency of the African Union to conduct reviews and reports on the governance and socioeconomic performance of African nations, with the aim to establish best practices and policies to foster political stability and sustainable development.

African-Americans are recognized among “Diaspora Africans of Africa’s Sixth Region,” according to the AU. The AU encourages Sixth Region members to contribute their expertise toward the goal of greater stability among African nations.

During a five-day APRM conference that began June 23 in N’djamena, Chad, the formal agreement outlining this historic alliance was signed by Eddy Maloka, CEO of APRM; Akwasi Osei, associate dean of the DSU College of Humanities, Education and Social Sciences; and Ezrah Aharone, DSU adjunct associate professor, who was authorized to sign on behalf of Kool-Baker Global, a third member of the partnership.

Kool-Baker Global is a renewable energy company founded by Robert “Kool” Bell of Kool & The Gang and Dusty Baker. Kool-Baker Global will serve as development partners to bring microgrid innovations to Africa.

This MOU will expand DSU’s involvement in international cooperation; among others, DSU will provide intellectual capital and student interns to assist the APRM.

DSU and APRM are now looking to identify other HBCUs and Diaspora enterprises to strengthen this academic-economic-governmental model for African development.

The conference culminated with a ceremony where Chad President Idriss Déby Itno officially received and endorsed the APRM’s Country Review Report of Chad’s evaluation status.