, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 3 – President Uhuru Kenyatta says Kenya has forwarded the name of Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed as the next Chairperson of Africa Union (AU) Commission.
Making the announcement during the Youth Summit held at State House Nairobi, President Kenyatta expressed optimism that CS Mohamed would prevail against other nominees to the post.
“We have to root for her, you know that we submitted her name to be the next Chairperson of the African Union Commission.”
AU member states had until the end of September to formally nominate candidates for the position of chairperson and deputy chairperson.
According to the Commission, the names of candidates will be circulated to the member states by October 14, more than three months before the election, scheduled for January 30 to 31, 2017 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
In July, African heads of state meeting in Kigali failed to elect a new head of the African Union and opted to try again in January.
Current AU Commission President Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma was due to stand down but leaders were unable to agree on a successor to lead the executive branch of the continental body during its 27th summit meeting, being held in the Rwandan capital.
“Black smoke billows from the 27th AU Summit as no winner emerges… Commission elections postponed till next summit,” Dlamini-Zuma’s spokesman, Jacob Enoh Eben, said on Twitter, referencing the smoke signal that precedes the naming of a new pope.
None of the three candidates was able to muster the two-thirds majority required to win in the secret ballot.