African News

New AU chairperson not happy with tardiness

5 February 2017 at 08:50 | 3002 views

PV Staff

The recently elected Chairperson of the African Union, Guinea’s President Alpha Conde (seen second from left in photo with the past and present AU chairpersons and a staff member of the AU secretariat) has warned that business will no longer be done as in the past at the AU secretariat in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, under his chairmanship of the continental body.

One of the things he will not tolerate, he said, is the practice of people coming late to attend sittings or to work. He said when Africans go to meetings in other countries they always arrive on time but fail to do that at the AU. He said that kind of behaviour will no longer be looked at kindly at the AU from now on.

He said some heads of state only attend the opening ceremonies at the AU and then leave but when such leaders attend conferences outside Africa they will arrive on time and stay till the end of the sessions.

He also strictly warned that government ministers will no longer be allowed to represent their heads of state at AU summits, pointing out that summits are for heads of state, not for ministers, since the ministers have their own meetings to attend.

Conde will be AU chairperson for one year and will hand over to his successor around this time next year. He replaces former AU chairperson, Chadian president Idris Deby Itno.

Also, the former Chadian Foreign Minister Moussa Faki Mahamat was elected Chairperson of the AU Commission. He will be responsible for the day to day running of the secretariat. He succeeds former chairperson Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma of South Africa.

Here is President Conde delivering his acceptance speech in French, Guinea’s official language. A transcript of this speech in English is available on the AU website: