Yayi Boni succeeds Obiang Nguema as AU Chairman

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (PANA) - The President of Benin, Yayi Boni, has taken over the chairmanship of the African Union (AU) following his nomination at a mini-Summit of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).

Boni's election came as a result of compromise by the West African leaders.

Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan had made a last-minute bid for the Chairmanship, but his quest was opposed by Ghana and other West African states which supported the Beninese President.

Equatorial Guinea's President Teodoro Obiang Nguema handed over the leadership of the AU and installed the new Chairman at the 18th AU Summit, which kicked off on Sunday, with the crisis in North Africa and the need to manage the transitions in the region dominating discussions.

Speaking during the meeting, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon made a formal plea to African leaders to appreciate the differences in the crises in Libya and Cote d’Ivoire and mend fences for the sake of future relations.

“There were differences in Cote d’Ivoire and Libya. These were not differences of objectives or goals; our partnership is anchored in shared values. These were differences in operational and strategic approaches. This is natural, even to be expected among organisations with varied mandates and membership,” Ban said.
-0- PANA AO/VAO 29Jan2012

29 Janeiro 2012 10:23:18

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