Dlamini-Zuma pledges to focus on poverty reduction

South Africa’s Home Affairs minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who is vying for the African Union Commission chairperson position, has pledged to focus on the development of the continent, including fighting and reducing poverty and underdevelopment if she lands the top job.

In her pledge statement, Dlamini-Zuma said she had been inspired to contest by the plight of the continent which she said must decide its own destiny.

“We need to eradicate conflicts on our continent by providing African solutions to African problems, and build sustainable economies and enhance continental interconnectivity through infrastructure to promote intra-Africa trade, amongst others,” Dlamini-Zuma said.

“With 2010 to 2020 being declared by the African Union as the Decade of Women, we must develop and implement clear programmes to ensure the emancipation of women and consolidate democracy and good governance in our respective countries.”

Dlamini-Zuma said she would strive to provide for the African people, notably in sectors of education, health, shelter and job creation.

She said there was also need to accelerate integration in all spheres with Regional Economic Communities (RECs) as the building blocks, advance and defend the interests of Africa in global affairs.

“I have accepted the challenge of leading the Commission because I believe that more can be done to make the African Union fulfil the mandate given to it by our forebearers. We need to build the Commission into a formidable, premier, Pan-African institution that is at the selfless service of this continent,” she said.

Dlamini-Zuma faces current chairman Jean Ping of Gabon in elections pencilled for next week.

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