President Jacob Zuma concludes his participation in the 16th African Union (AU) Summit, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
31 Jan 2011
South Africa, led by President Zuma went into the Summit in Ethiopia with a number of prioritised issues, key amongst which were: our take on the theme of the Summit; the AU Budget for 2011; the transformation of the AU Commission into the AU Authority; the outcomes of the Conference of the Parties (COP16) and the Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP6), peace and security issues as they relate to the Sudan and Cote D’Ivoire; United Nations Reforms, New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) and the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM), the ANC Centenary Celebrations Lecture and the hosting of the African Diaspora in 2012.
At the end of intense deliberations over the four days in Addis Ababa, the Assembly of the African Union’s Sixteenth Ordinary Session from 30 to 31 January 2011 endorsed several decisions, key amongst which were:
- that the 50th Anniversary of the Establishment of the Organisation of African Unity be celebrated in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on 25 May 2013;
- the candidature of the Republic of South Africa for election to the membership of the UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice (CCPCJ) be supported
- congratulated President Jacob Zuma and the Republic of South Africa as the host of COP 17 in Durban, South Africa on behalf of Africa in December 2011
- called on all Member States to implement the 10 themes of the African Women’s Decade in line with the Nairobi Declaration and the Road Map for African Women’s Decade including through the Fund for African Women
- requested member States and Regional Economic Communities to maximally utilise the offices of the Pan-African Women’s Organisation in their respective regions to highlight and enhance the contribution of women to the development of the continent.
- That the Commission on the transformation of the African Union Commission into the African Union Authority convene a fourth meeting of government experts to consider the remaining two documents, followed by a meeting of Ministers of Justice/Attorneys General of Member States during the first half of 2011 to consider and finalise the legal instruments on the transformation of the AU Commission into the AU Authority for submission to the next Ordinary Session of the Assembly, through the Executive Council, for consideration;
- it welcomed the G20 Summit decision to invite to future G20 summits at most five non-G20 countries, including to enlarge Africa’s participation to two seats, which will be the country chairing the AU and the country chairing NEPAD Heads of State and Government Orientation Committee.
- noted that the African Diaspora process remains a standing Agenda item for the Summit meeting in order to enable the commission and the Republic of South Africa to report on progress towards the hosting of the global African Diaspora Summit and beyond
- saluted the governments and liberation movements on the Continent, as well as the International Solidarity Movement, for being an inspiration to the ANC and the people of South Africa in their resistance against apartheid and their attainment of freedom, hence the Assembly decided to link the centenary of the ANC and the anniversaries of other continental liberation movements to the recent celebration of the 50th Anniversaries of the independence of many African countries and to Africa’s shared values
- welcomed the proposal to valorise the African Liberation Heritage and stressed the need to undertake a study on the objectives, structures and financial implications of the proposed Programme
- agreed that the theme for the Eighteenth Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union to be held in January/February 2012 will be “Boosting Intra-African Trade.”
- noted that 2011 marks ten (10) years since the adoption of NEPAD (in July 2001 in Lusaka) as the AU’s flagship socio-economic programme and stressed that this landmark provides the opportunity for deeper reflection at all levels on the success and challenge factors for actualising Africa’s transformation agenda and that
- the date of the seventeenth ordinary session of the Assembly to be held in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, shall be: 23 to 24 June 2011 for the 22nd Ordinary Session of the Permanent Representatives Committee; the 19th Ordinary Session of the Executive Council will be held on 26 to 27 June 2011, whilst the 17th Ordinary Session of the Assembly will be held on 29 to 30 June 2011.
In his wrap-up interview, President Jacob Zuma spoke at length on the decision of the Assembly to establish a five-member High Level Panel on the Ivory Coast. The five presidents mandated by the AU to help resolve the Ivory Coast leadership dispute, the presidents of South Africa, Tanzania, Mauritania, Burkina Faso and Chad will form the high-level panel. The mandate of the panel, according President Zuma, is amongst others, to evaluate the situation and formulate on the basis of the relevant decision of AU and ECOWAS and other political crisis exit plan. The panel which will be supported by a team of experts, he said, is expected to conclude its work within a period not exceeding one month, and its conclusion, which will be endorsed by the council will be binding on all the Ivorian parties with which this conclusion would have been negotiated.
On the referendum in Southern Sudan, President Zuma commended the leadership of Sudan (both President Al-Bashir and First Vice President HE General Salva Kiir Mayardit) for proving the skeptics wrong and allowing the Sudanese people to make a determination about their future. He nevertheless cautioned that beyond the referendum lies a “lot of work."
For further information, please contact:
Mr Clayson Monyela
Cell: 082 884 5974
Source: Department of International Relations and Cooperation
Issued by: Department of International Relations and Cooperation
31 Jan 2011
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