The African press is very critical after the eighteenth meeting of the African Union (AU) in Addis Ababa, which ended without the expected election of the President of the Commission.
”African disunity,” writes the Burkinabe ‘Paalga Observateur’ newspaper denouncing the defeat of the “consensus that allows one to choose commissioners and chairman of the Commission without great difficulty.” The paper stresses that in order to assert its interests, South Africa has been “very aggressive” and has “opted for the politics of the worse the better with hegemonic attitudes that other countries disliked (…)”.
Equally unfavorable is the evaluation of ‘Guineeconakry.info’. In an article entitled ‘The summit of the division and irresponsibility’, the information portal writes: “If the AU wanted to give itself the image of a ridiculous institution, one would be hard pressed to find any better at the summit just concluded in Addis Ababa, the new home does not necessarily mean progress. “
According to ‘Guineeconakry.info’, the lack of agreement between the Heads of State of 54 countries questions “the ideals of the founding fathers who thought about unity and federalism,” and gives out “a humiliating image of a divided continent on regional and linguistic basis. ”
At the end of the summit, in order to compensate for the non-election of Jean Ping of Gabon, outgoing President of the Commission in competition with the South African Interior Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, it was decided to start a transition period of six months until next July’s summit in Malawi.
The interim president of the Commission has been entrusted to Ping once again, backed by Vice-President Erastus Mwencha and eight outgoing Commissioners. The president of the AU, the Thomas Boni Yayi of Benin, has today announced the creation of a committee, by March, that will draft a new electoral rules to prevent such a situation is created in the future. Under the current rules, if no candidate can be elected after four rounds, the votes are suspended.
The diplomatic divisions over the presidency of the Commission have overshadowed the final document from the summit on the “development of the Inter-African trade.”
AU Member States have decided to “accelerate the construction of continental infrastructure”, particularly in the areas of energy, transport and telecommunications, and “give new impetus to regional integration process.”
The cost of the projects for the next 10 years was estimated at 60 billion dollars.