Cape Town – The African Union (AU) is on Friday set to hold its first ever debate for the post of African Union Commission chair.
The debate will take place at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, ahead of an election in January.
It would be live streamed "to the entire continent and beyond on the AU live stream link which is available on the AU website", the AU said in a statement
At least five contenders were seeking to head the continental body, taking over from the current chair Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
The AU said the debate would "give the candidates an opportunity to speak to African citizens, popularise the AU and give their vision for an integrated, prosperous and peaceful Africa".
The debate would be conducted before a live audience comprising members of the AU executive council; members of the Permanent Representatives Committee (PRC), African Union Commissioners; media personnel, among others.
African heads of state failed to elect a new head of the commission in July after they were unable to agree on a successor to the lead the executive branch of the continental body during its 27th summit in Kigali, Rwanda.
None of the three candidates at the time was able to muster the two-thirds majority required to win the secret ballot.
The five contenders in Friday’s debate were: Senegal’s Abdoulaye Bathily, Botswana’s Penelope Venson, Chad’s Moussa Faki Mhamat, Equatorial Guinea’s Agapito Mba Mokuy and Kenya’s Amina Mohamed.
The five contenders. (Picture: Supplied)
The debate will take place in the context of the series "Africa Leadership Debates", dubbed MjadalaAfrika, which will be a platform for key stakeholders in various aspects of society to discuss the various opportunities that can be harnessed to ensure Africa achieves its goals for integrated and sustainable development, said the AU.
Dlamini-Zuma recently said that she hopped her successor would implement some of the goals set for agenda 2063.
Agenda 2063 sought to steer the continent towards higher social, political, economic and cultural values.