Zuma returns from AU summit

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iol news pic Zuma_AUPSC 10th anniversary_01 GCIS President Jacob Zuma has concluded his working visit in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, where he attended the African Union Summit.

Pretoria - President Jacob Zuma has concluded his working visit in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, where he attended the African Union Summit, the international relations department said on Thursday night.

Zuma led the South African delegation to the summit, the 23rd Ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly, which started on Wednesday, spokesman Clayson Monyela said in a statement.

The summit was themed '2014 Year of Agriculture and Food Security in Africa, Marking the 10th Anniversary of Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme'.

It would also consider the finalisation of the Agenda 2063 Continental Framework, as part of the vision of Africa in the next 50 years.

The summit, which would conclude its deliberations on Friday, had taken decisions on key issues pertaining to development, peace and security, climate change and the mobilisation of resources.

Zuma told African leaders at the summit that agriculture had great potential in enabling sustainable development, food security and job creation in Africa.

“An emerging issue identified by the AU leaders was the need for young people to appreciate the importance of agriculture in the economy of their countries,” Zuma said.

He said women should take the lead in agriculture and contribute to growing economic activity, which was vital for food security.

Monyela said the African Union Heads of State and Government also discussed peace and security matters, particularly the mobilisation of resources for the African Capacity for Immediate Crisis (ACIRC).

ACIRC was expected to be launched by October.

“In order to respond to crises on the continent, the AU Summit took a decision last year to operationalise the African Capacity for Immediate Response to Crises as an interim mechanism, until the African Standby Force is established,” Zuma said at the summit.

Zuma said countries which had volunteered to contribute resources to the ACIRC met during the summit to discuss its state of readiness.

“The African Union Commission concluded its verification visits to the contributing countries and presented a report on the framework for the operationalisation of the ACIRC, which was endorsed by the contributing countries,” said Zuma.

Sapa


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