Malawi: Mutharika Misses At Crucial AU Summit, Malawi Ex-President Joyce Banda Attends

Former Malawi president Joyce Banda (file photo).
11 February 2020

President Peter Mutharika was conspicuously missing at the African Union (AU) summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia as he battles for his political career following nullification of Constitutional Court nullification of his re-election, a matter which he is appealing at Supreme Court.

Joyce Banda speaking at the meeting in Ethiopia Joyce Banda with Rwandan President Paul Kagame at the summit Joyce Banda at the meeting in Ethiopia Joyce Banda greeting South Afrcian President Cyril Ramaphosa at the meeting in Ethiopia Joyce Banda at the meeting in Ethiopia

The Constitutional Court ruling for a fresh election in July has shocked the 79-year-old president who has not been seen in public since the judgment was delivered last week.

Also missing on the agenda at the AU summit which ended on Monday is Malawi's political crisis which threatens the country's fragile democracy and its weak economy.

Meanwhile, the African Union (AU) has unanimously elected President Paul Kagame as the new chairperson of one its new agencies that will drive the continent towards vision 2063.

Kagame was elected chairperson of African Union Development Agency- New Partnership for Africa's Development (AUDA-NEPAD) Heads of State and Government Orientation Committee (HSGOC).

Former president Joyce Banda attended the meetings and has been making key contributions and engaging stakeholders.

The AUDA-NEPAD is an integral component of the AU which brings both institutions together to work effectively, and Kagame said it's everyone's duty to make it happen.

The election that was held at the 37th HSGOC session also came with the Launch of Africa Innovation Outlook III and launch of Agenda 2063 report which was presented by the President of Cote d'Ivoire, Alassane Ouattara.

This was alongside the ongoing High-Level Forum at the AU Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, where several African heads of state will draw security plans and negotiate implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA).

President Kagame will start his two year term as chairperson of HSGOC from 2020-2022, a job that he is familiar with as a former chairman of the AU.

"The African Union Development Agency-NEPAD looks forward to his great leadership and guidance," NEPAD said in a statement.

In his acceptance remarks Kagame said the transformation of the NEPAD Planning & Coordinating Agency into AUDA-NEPAD is affirmation that NEPAD is the right vehicle to drive transformation on the continent.

"I can only pledge to do my best, in concert with all of you, to uphold this organ's founding principles," President Kagame said.

The Africa Agenda 2063 has seven aspirations and overall continent aspirations stand at 33%.

The seven aspirations include: A prosperous Africa based on inclusive growth and sustainable development; politically integrated continent on ideals of Pan-Africanism and Africa renaissance; governance, democracy, respect of human rights and rule of the law; peaceful secure; strong cultural identity, reliance on an African potential; drive Africa as a strong and influential global partner.

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