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CATEGORIES OF MEMBERSHIP OF THE AFRICAN UNION OF THE BLIND

Membership of the African Union of the Blind shall be open to organizations of / for blind people from all countries within Africa, recognised as independent states by the United Nations, and shall comprise the following categories:

National members: Organizations of blind people, which represent a country, and which are admitted to membership by the Board of Officers and pay the membership fee or otherwise fulfill membership requirements. Provided that where in any country one or more organizations of blind people operating at national level join together with or without organizations for blind people to form a consortium which seeks national membership for that country. The Board of Officers may admit that consortium as a national member on payment of the membership fee but only if the organizations which form the consortium agree that at least one half of the delegates for the assembly are nominated by organizations of blind people.

Special members: A special member is an organization or organizations for blind people representing a country in which there is, for the time being, no national organization of blind people in existence, which is admitted by the executive and pays the membership fee.  A special member shall be expected actively to promote the establishment of a national organization of blind people in its country and its membership shall be reviewed by the Board of Officers every four years. Special members shall have 50 percent voting power during the General Assembly.

International Members: Those international organizations invited by the Board of Officers to become international members and which pay the membership fee.  To qualify for such membership, the organization shall be one which promotes and co-ordinates substantial international programs of activities for the benefit of blind and partially sighted people or for the prevention of blindness.

Honorary life members: Those persons deemed to have rendered long and outstanding international service to blind and partially sighted people or in the prevention of blindness may, on the recommendation of the national member from the country where he / she resides and with the approval of the Board of officers, be elected by the Assembly as honorary life member of the Union.  In the case of an honorary life member who dies or who has died, the Executive Director shall record his/ her name and a summary of the citation to the Assembly in a roll of honor to be maintained by him / her and placed in the Union archives.

Associate members: Upon payment of an annual membership fee to be determined by the General Assembly on the recommendation of the Board of Officers, any legal entity which does not otherwise qualify under any class or category of membership under this Constitution, may, on the recommendation of the Board of Officers, be admitted as an associate member of the Union, with rights to speak as an observer but without any voting rights on any issue.