President Julius Maada Bio has departed Sierra Leone on Friday for the Brussels, Belgium.

In a statement by President Press Secretary, Yusuf Keketoma Sandi, Bio is travelling to the Brussels on invitation of the President of the European Council, Charles Michel.

At Brussels, Bio is also expected to meet with the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell Fontelles as well as the European Union Commissioner for International Partnerships, Jutta Urpilainen.

“Today, @PresidentBio departs 🇸🇱 for Brussels on the invitation of the President of the EC, @CharlesMichel. While in Brussels, he is expected to meet with @JosepBorrellF and @JuttaUrpilainen. From Brussels, @PresidentBio will proceed to attend the 36th Ordinary Session of the AU.”, Keketoma wrote.

Bio’s departure comes just a day after announcing his running mate for the 2023 presidential elections in Sierra Leone. Under the flagship of the Sierra Leone People’s party, Julius Maada Bio and Vice President Juldeh Jalloh will be seeking reelection on Saturday, 24 June 2023.

Scheduled with the February itinerary of the President is the 36th ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly (Heads of State and Government Session) and 42nd Ordinary Session of the Executive Council (Ministerial Session) which will be held from February 18–19 and 15–16, 2023 respectively in Addis Ababa.

Ayele Lire, the Ethiopian Permanent Representative to the African Union said that the summit is anticipated to majorly assess the status of Agenda 2063, Africa’s development blueprint to achieve inclusive and sustainable socio-economic development over a 50-year period.

“It is 10 years since the African Union Agenda 2063 was launched. So the upcoming 36th AU is going to evaluate how we worked and the problems we faced. It also reviews the activities of the reforms being undertaken within the African Union itself to enable this continental organ fulfilling its priorities,” the representative noted.