News African Union Chairman President Alpha Conde of Guinea/Photo: AFP
News African Union Chairman President Alpha Conde of Guinea/Photo: AFP

By Concise News Correspondents 

The African Union (AU) has elected Guinea’s President, Alpha Conde, as its new Chairman.

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Conde succeeds Chadian leader Idriss Deby.

The Guinean leader’s election was conducted by the Heads of State and Government of the African Union during their 28th Ordinary Session holding in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

The post rotates annually amongst the five geographic regions of Africa; and over the years it has assumed the following order: East, North, Southern, Central and West Africa.

In 2002, South African President Thabo Mbeki served as the inaugural chairman of the union.

Conde promises to unite Africans

The Chairperson in his acceptance speech said his focus would be to strengthen the unity of the continent, as he seeks to work in line with the legacy of the union’s founding fathers.

Conde said access to modern energy would be a major priority adding that he would also develop a roadmap for  energy , which is key to industrialisation.

He called on the member states to work towards achieving the renewed commitment announced at the end of the 27th Ordinary Session of the AU Assembly in Kigali where African leaders adopted the Agenda 2063.

Among the major decisions made is the adoption of a new funding model for the AUC. This will see all the 54 member countries contribute some 1.2 billion dollars to the Union’s coffers every year through levying 0.2 per cent tax on eligible imports.

The funds will be directly sent to the AU secretariat, which would use it in financing operational costs as well as development programmes and peace support operations.