"The two Presidents acknowledged that it was important to find an appropriate conclusion to this important issue so as not to discredit the continental organisation but rather put it on a sound and firm footing to adequately address the numerous challenges facing the continent", the communique said.

Date published on SAFPI: 
Monday, 14 May, 2012
Date published on source: 
Saturday, 12 May, 2012
Source organisation: 
Business Ghana
Keyword tags: 

AU to meet today on the election of members of AU Commission

Accra: The African Union (AU) Adhoc Committee of Heads of State and Government would meet Monday in Cotonou, Benin, to examine the election of the Chairperson, Deputy Chairperson and members of the AU Commission. The 18th African Union summit last January meeting in Addis Ababa failed to elect a Chairperson of the Commission.

Neither the incumbent, Jean Ping of Gabon who had served as AU Commission chairman since 2008, nor his challenger Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, South Africa's home minister and ex-wife of South African President Jacob Zuma, secured enough votes to win hence the election of the Commission Chairperson was postponed to the next meeting of the Union in July.

The adhoc committee's meeting was reinforced in a communique at the end of a one day working visit of Benin President and the Chairman of the Union, President Thomas Yayi Boni, to Ghana on Friday. The visit was at the instance of President John Evans Atta Mills to discuss issues of mutual interest.

"The two Presidents acknowledged that it was important to find an appropriate conclusion to this important issue so as not to discredit the continental organisation but rather put it on a sound and firm footing to adequately address the numerous challenges facing the continent", the communique said.

The two Presidents acknowledged the current security challenges that the West African region is grappling with and indicated that the situation calls for closer collaboration between ECOWAS Member States towards addressing the challenges.

Presidents Mills and Boni condemned the military insurgency in the north of Mali and Guinea Bissau and declaration of independence of the north of Mali, and called on the rebel forces in the north of Mali to come to the negotiation table to address of their grievances, while they pledged their support for the deployment of ECOWAS Standby Force to help contain the security challenges in the two countries.

The two leaders welcomed the invitation extended to them by US President Barack Obama to participate in the upcoming G8 Summit in Camp David, and described the invitation as recognition of the significance of Africa to global politics and expressed their resolve to co-ordinate their participation and speak with one voice effectively to pursue the interests of the continent at the summit.

President Mills accepted an invitation to pay a reciprocal visit to Benin.

  • Related article: President Zuma to undertake working visit to the Republic of Benin

Pretoria: President Jacob Zuma will undertake a working visit to Cotonou, Republic of Benin, to attend the meeting of the African Union Heads of State and Government ad-hoc Committee on the election of the members of the African Union Commission, scheduled to take place on 14 May 2012.

As previously recalled, the January 2012 AU Summit established the Ad Hoc Committee of Eight Heads of State and Government to work on the upcoming AU election of Members of the Commission. The election will take place during the next Summit in Malawi later this year. 

Prior to the forthcoming meeting, Ad Hoc Committee met on 17 March in Cotonou, Benin, wherein it was decided that South Africa and Gabon should undertake bilateral consultations to seek a consensual solution and report back to the Committee. As part of this decision, President Zuma is scheduled to brief the Committee on, amongst other things, the bilateral consultations that have taken place between South Africa and Gabon.

Source: DIRCO

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