Addis Ababa – President Jacob Zuma on Friday welcomed South Africa’s re-election to the African Union Peace and Security Council (PSC) at the African Union (AU) summit being held in Ethiopia.
The AU’s executive council - of ministers - elected South Africa and 14 other members to the PSC on Thursday.
The PSC is a standing, decision-making organ of the African Union for the prevention, management and resolution of conflicts.
“We commit ourselves to continue working with the other members of the PSC and the rest of the AU membership in pursuit of peace and stability on our continent,” Zuma said in a statement.
“The maintenance of peace and stability in Africa is key to realising the vision as contained in Agenda 2063 of a peaceful and secure Africa that is strong, united and an influential global player and partner”.
Zuma noted that some of the PSC’s core functions included conducting early warning and preventive diplomacy, facilitating peace-making and recommending intervention in member states to promote peace, security and stability.
“The PSC also works in support of peace-building and post-conflict reconstruction as well as humanitarian action and disaster management.”
The 15 member states elected to the PSC by the executive council have to be endorsed by the full summit of heads of state and government this weekend. But this is expected to be a formality.
This is the first year in the PSC’s 12-year history that all 15 of its members had to be elected. It was an unusually fiercely contested election, especially in East Africa where seven countries competed for three seats.
The PSC comprises five three-year seats and ten two-year seats. South Africa was elected for a two-year term, though it had sought a three-year term, according to official sources.
South Africa served continuously on the PSC from its inception in 2004 until 2012 when it stood back. It was elected again in 2014.