Zuma's AU summit absence raises eyebrows

South Africa will not be complying with AU rules determining that either the head of state or the deputy must attend this continental meeting.

President Jacob Zuma. Picture: GCIS

JOHANNESBURG - The announcement that President Jacob Zuma will miss the African Union summit is raising eyebrows among delegates gathering in Addis Ababa.

South Africa will not be complying with AU rules determining that either the head of state or the deputy must attend this continental meeting.

Government’s confirmed that Minister of International Relations and Co-operation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane will lead South Africa's delegation to the African Union summit on 3-4 July.

It did not explain Zuma’s absence.

However this is clearly caused by his having to attend the make-or-break African National Congress (ANC) policy conference starting this Friday and ending on 5 July.

This is also why deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa can’t be in Addis Ababa.

He’s locked in a power contest with ANC NEC member Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma who just completed her term as AU Commission chairperson.