Foreign minister of Chad Moussa Faki Mahamat will be replacing African Union Commission chairperson Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
This followed a vote by African heads of state and government on Monday afternoon during the African Union Summit in the Ethiopian capital.
After the initial round of voting, only Mahamat and Kenya’s Foreign Minister, Amina Mohamed, were left to contest the position, with Mahamat eventually emerging victorious.
Six months ago, Dlamini-Zuma, who declined a second four-year term, had her tenure extended in Kigali, Rwanda, after elections to replace her were inconclusive. Dlamini-Zuma, an academic and politician, was the first woman to lead the 50-year-old organisation.
At the weekend, South Africa Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane said this time around, “there would be no choice” but to conclude the elections.
Five candidates were vying for the post, including Mahamat, Senegal’s Abdoulaye Bathily, a former UN special envoy for Central Africa, Botswana’s Foreign Minister Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi, Equatorial Guinea’s Foreign Minister Agapito Mba Mokuy and Kenya’s Mohamed.
In the months leading to the election, Mohamed had campaigned extensively in East Africa and was expected to be a formidable candidate, but Mahamat, who was considered an outside bet, beat her in the final vote.
– African News Agency