The AU summit in July in Kigali, capital of Rwanda, had failed to decide the successor of current AU Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma from three candidates which are Botswana’s Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi, Equatorial Guinea’s Agapito Mba Mokuy and Uganda’s Speciosa Wandira-Kazibwe.
Since then, new candidates have declared their campaign for the election. The candidates are Chad’s Mahamat Moussa Faki, Senegalese Abdoulaye Bathily, Somalia’s Fowsiyo Yusuf Adam and Kenya’s Amina Mohammed. It is expected the election will be more fierce in January next year than the one in July.
In order to win the election, the home countries of candidates have embarked on an intense lobbying. In early October, Chadian President Deby, who is also AU rotating chairman, sent his Prime Minister Albert Pahim Padacke to Malabo, capital of Equatorial Guinea, to get support for the candidate.
Only three months ahead of the 28th AU summit, President Deby chose to come to Cameroon himself to meet with Cameroonian President Paul Biya.
Paul Biya is the oldest and more respected among the leaders in Central African Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC) which include Cameroon, Chad, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Congo-Brazzaville and Central African Republic. Cameroon’s economy is the biggest in CEMAC. It is observed the support from Cameroon is very important as in the election in 2008 when Gabonese Jean Ping was elected to be chairperson of AU Commission.
Cameroon and Chad are working together to fight against Nigerian Islamic sect Boko Haram as members of Lake Chad Basin Commission. The regional organization for this purpose established at a summit in February 2015 in Yaounde a multinational force of 8,700 men. After one and half years, the attacks from Boko Haram have been greatly contained in the region. Enditem