A Press statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation and Gambians Abroad announce yesterday, Gambia's inclusion to the African Union's Peace and Security Council (AU PSC).
"The Republic of The Gambia has been elected from the West African Region as a member of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union for the period 2012 to 2014," the ministry said.
It attributed the successful bid to President Jammeh's "keen interest in fostering peace and stability for sustainable development throughout the continent and beyond as evidenced by his mediation efforts in Guinea, Cote d’Ivoire, and Senegal together with other troubled parts of the world where he has relentlessly committed peacekeeping troops."
The Gambia's election was made at the recently concluded 18th Ordinary Session of the African Union Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The country will assume its mandate in the Council on 1st April 2012.
The North Bank Evening Standard understands 10 new members have been elected in to the AU PSC. Gambia alongside Guinea, and Cote d’Ivoire are representing West Africa. Tanzania was also elected to the PSC for a two-year term. Lesotho and Angola will represent the Southern Africa region at the Council, while Egypt was elected as the sole representative of the North African region.
The new members will replace Burundi, Chad, Mali, Namibia and Rwanda in April 2012.
The 10 new members will join five other members (Libya, Equatorial Guinea, Kenya, Nigeria and Zimbabwe) who are currently serving in the Council for a three-year terms.
Though it has come under criticism for being "indecisive" in the face of major conflicts in Africa, the AU PSC has gradually gained confidence as the "most effectively run and functional organ" of the Union, becoming a powerful weapon within.
This shows the overwhelming interest it drew from most of the countries involved.
Author: Modou S. Joof