Friday January 27, 2017
Kenya owes the people of Africa the debt of chairing the AU Commission, says Foreign PS Monica Juma.
As we glide through the final lap of the African Union Commission Chairmanship race, it is fitting to remind ourselves, as a country, why we support our candidate, CS Dr. Amina Mohamed.
The original election, scheduled for July 2016 in Rwanda was aborted, with AU Summit holding that no candidate then present was capable to head the AUC. Of the candidates vying for the Jan 30th 2017 elections in Addis Ababa, only Amb. Dr. Amina Mohamed is being fronted for the first time. With the other candidates, still in the race, the question Africa should be posing is, ‘What has changed, since Kigali, Rwanda, 2016?
The chair of the African Union has a lot of weight in setting the global agenda, including trade, good governance, institutionalising democracy, intra-African trade, peace and security. Which of the candidates has the most experience, global networks and acceptance, proven ability, passion, and loyalty to lead Africa, than Amb. Dr. Amina Mohamed? Dr. Amina Mohamed’s position, for instance, on the Morocco and ICC issues reflect the position of the AU Summit. This is a sign of loyalty and humility. The AUC serves the AU Summit, not the other way around.
Since 2002, when the OAU transformed into the AU, East Africa has been absent from the topmost echelon of leadership at the AU. Yet, within this time, Kenya has remained committed to the African cause, including offering money, time, venues and logistics for numerous AU meetings and conferences, while involving African countries fully. Among these contributions to Africa by Kenya, are the TICAD, WTO and UNCTAD, most of them being hosted in Africa for the first time.
It is therefore, the moment for Kenya. According to Dr. Monica Juma, PS for Foreign Affairs and an accomplished diplomat in her own right, ‘Kenya is in a very good place diplomatically at the moment, being a much-sought after continental Brand in its golden moments. AUC leadership is therefore a debt Kenya owes to the people of Africa, a debt that we need to pay at the end of this month.
What better consideration than to give Africa our best, and most proven CS and Africa’s top diplomat, Amb. Dr. Amina Mohamed?’ It is the moment for Kenya to scale up in taking the leadership of the continent, as our strategic contribution to Africa, adds Dr. Monica Juma.
Dr. Amina Mohamed is a diplomat with a pleasant personality, a person who will push the African agenda, without being unpleasant; a pragmatic and practical leader with networks spanning through the entire globe. In entering the race to lead the AUC and sharing her thoughts and vision, Amb.
Amina Mohamed is humbly answering the call from African countries after the stalled elections in Rwanda in July 2016. One of Dr. Amina’s personal attribute is the building of consensus in key issues and a passion for inclusivity and consultation. As a pointer to this, CS Dr. Amina Mohamed has visited nearly all the countries in Africa, to have a footprint in all the 53 countries and to get a feel on the ground, including understanding first-hand the concern of and the challenges facing each and every country.
Dr. Amina Mohamed also used these visits to ensure her acceptance across the continent, as a first step in building the much-needed African unity and to strengthen the African voice on the issues of regional integration, which forms the building block for African continental integration.
Dr. Amina Mohamed is endowed with an enviable skill set that includes working with the world public and private business to build strong and smart partnerships, adds PS Dr. Monica Juma. According to PS Monica Juma, Dr. Amina Mohamed is a candidate who can unleash the potential of women while leveraging on the youth agenda for wealth and employment creation.
Here at home, as we make the case that Kenya deserves the AUC leadership, we cannot doubt our country or differ among ourselves, on an obvious national duty and obligation. As a country and a people, we ought to know when the nation comes before our differences that may be informed by ethnic naivety or personal professional and political differences. Perhaps, as a guide, our futuristic leaders included patriotism as one of our national core values in the Constitution that was promulgated on August 27, 2010: Kenya first.