Ethiopia

Kikwete Emerges As Most Preferred Candidate f

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Dr. Jakaya Kikwete

The charismatic former President of the United Republic of Tanzania Jakaya Kikwete has emerged the consensus candidate who African leaders are looking to replace the current charismatic Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who decided in April this year not to seek a second term in office, thereby forcing an election for a successor. Dr. Dlamini-Zuma is allegedly running for an entirely different office outside the AU, to become the first female President of South Africa.
Upon her announcing her decision not to seek a second term, three countries immediately rushed to submit their candidates to replace her, after a voting by the entire body of the African Union Heads of State. These countries included Botswana, Equatorial Guinea, and Uganda – the first two represented by their former foreign ministers and Uganda represented by its former Vice President.
Immediately the submissions were released by the African Union Commission, this newspaper began a campaign to dissuade the African leaders from voting for any of the candidates representing some of the totalitarian dictators in Africa, including Equatorial Guinea whose President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo has stayed in office for more than 36 years, and President Yoweri Museveni who has stayed in office for 30 years, and just held a sham election where the opposition candidate was imprisoned before the election.
In our campaign, I stated as follows, “Totalitarian dictators must not be rewarded with the position of Chairperson of the African Union Commission. The time for such shameful action is past. Africa needs to turn a new leaf. We don’t need the august body to be tainted with the excreta of leaders who believe they are above the law, who hold sham elections while jailing their opponents. To effectively carry out Agenda 2063, the African Union needs a leader with clean hands. To allow the two candidates from Equatorial Guinea and Uganda to contest will be a disgrace to the continent, in which case a new deadline for submission of candidacies should be extended.”
With the Voice of America helping us to spread our message that African leaders should not reward totalitarian dictators with the highest post in the continent, the leaders heeded our advice. The African Union Heads of State met in Kigali, Rwanda, on the 17th and 18th July, for the 27th Summit of the Extraordinary Session of the organization. On the last day of the Summit, the 18th, the leaders voted for the three candidates including Botswana’s Dr. Pelonomi Venson-Moitoi, Mr. Agapito Mba Mokuy of Equatorial Guinea, and Uganda’s Dr. Speciosa Wandira Kazibwe. The first two were former foreign ministers of their respective countries, while that of Uganda was former Vice President.
When the first balloting ended, the Ugandan candidate withdrew for lack of support, leaving the candidates of Botswana and Equatorial Guinea to battle it out. After two more ballots as the African Union constituted act mandates, none of the two candidates had received the two-thirds of the vote needed to win the

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