Who will lead the African Union from 2021?


Despite the African Union’s (AU) active response to COVID-19 last year, the pandemic is far from over for Africa and the world. The continent also faces challenges around governance, elections, conflict and instability in the months ahead, including the ongoing priority to Silence the Guns in Africa by 2030.  

Leaders at the upcoming AU summit will elect a chairperson, deputy chairperson and six commissioners using new, stricter selection criteria. Will that help the AU Commission deal more efficiently with the many challenges on its plate? How can the AU have a greater impact on peace, security and development in Africa? 

Chair: Paul-Simon Handy, Senior Regional Advisor, ISS Dakar and Addis Ababa


Amb Xolisa Makaya, Permanent Representative of South Africa to the AU and Chair of the Permanent Representative Committee (TBC)

Liesl Louw-Vaudran, Senior Researcher and Project Leader: Southern Africa, ISS Pretoria

Dr Roba D Sharamo, Regional Director and Representative to the AU, Horn and East Africa, ISS Addis Ababa

Elizabeth Sidiropolous, Chief Executive of the South African Institute of International Affairs

Photo: ISS

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