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By Eric Naki

Political Editor


High praise for Ramaphosa as AU chair

Ramaphosa, who chaired the AU from January last year, described his term as 'baptism of fire' after the pandemic broke out within two months of assuming the position.


Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Naledi Pandor has praised President Cyril Ramaphosa for a job well done on the African continent as then chair of the African Union (AU).

Pandor was addressing LeadUP, a regular virtual alumni conversation hosted by the University of Pretoria vice-chancellor and principal, professor Tawana Kupe, under the topic, International Relations: Strategies for Strengthening SA’s Reputation on the Global Stage, on Wednesday evening.

She said Ramaphosa’s term had made a huge difference, especially in efforts to fight Covid-19 and on infrastructure development.

Under his leadership, African leaders and institutions, such as the Africa Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, had been able to work together to coordinate securing vaccines on behalf of countries under the AU.

Ramaphosa, who chaired the AU from January last year, described his term as “baptism of fire” after the pandemic broke out within two months of assuming the position.

As a crisis chair, his main task was to fight the spread of the virus on the continent.

Pandor also responded to criticism from international relations expert at UP Dr Sithembile Mbete, who said the AU had become an old boys’ club and did not include the youth in its activities.

Pandor said many AU institutions comprised youth and women. In all AU commissions there was a requirement for 50% women.

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