Zuma to participate in AU Summit

Friday, January 29, 2010

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma will be among the continent's leaders attending the 14th Ordinary Session of the African Union (AU) Summit to take place in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from Sunday.

Leaders are expected to try to find consensus on harmonising policy, legal and regulatory frameworks at regional and continental level and to create an enabling environment to attract investment and foster sustainable development of competitive ICT markets in the continent.

However, concerns about the continent's hotpots like Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Niger, Guinea and Sudan could overshadow the summit.

Zuma, as mediator, is expected give a report on the latest political developments in Zimbabwe and the outcomes of the SADC Summit held in Maputo.

He will also face questions regarding South Africa's report on the preparations of hosting the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

The President will be accompanied by International Relations and Cooperation Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Communications Minister Siphiwe Nyanda, Public Service and Administration Minister Richard Baloyi and other senior government officials who are already in Addis Ababa for pre-summit meetings.

Highlights during the summit will include the launch of the new AU flag and the continental scientific award ceremony for two successful African scientists. The AU Assembly will also adopt the budget for the 2010 financial year and appoint new members of the Peace and Security Council.

The Heads of State will also consider several reports including one on the Peace and Security Council, the report of High Level Panel on Darfur and the state of peace and security in Africa.

The South African Government's participation in the summit occurs within the context of consolidating the African Agenda that seeks to promote peace and security on the continent, the Department of International Relations and Cooperation said.