DRC readies for AU chairmanship

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DRC’s President Félix Tshisekedi has discreetly set up a working committee in preparation for his term as Chairperson of African Union, starting in February 2021,

With a little over four months to go before the upcoming AU Summit, during which Félix Tshisekedi will succeed his South African counterpart President Cyril Ramaphosa as the organisation’s Chairperson, the Congolese president’s team are already making preparations.

According to our sources, the head of state is working on forming a high-level panel to advise him once he takes the reins of the continental institution.

There will be plenty to do: finding a common position to the conflict in Libya; tamping down the insurgencies in the Sahel; pushing for renewed democracy in Mali; and handling the medical and economic impact of the global coronavirus pandemic. Not to mention the Great Lakes diplomatic headaches that will no doubt be stoked by his presence as Chair of the African Union, such as the uneasy Rwanda-Uganda stand-off.

Divided into several departments addressing such topics as the free trade area, economic integration, Agenda 2063 and culture, the panel will be coordinated by old hand Professor Alphonse Ntumba Luaba.

Selected primarily for his expertise on the Great Lakes region, where President Tshisekedi is focusing a portion of his diplomatic efforts, Prof Luaba is a former Executive Secretary of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region, who also previously served as deputy justice minister and human rights minister. – Africa Report

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