President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in Addis Ababa. February 9, 2019. Press Photo
CAIRO - 9 February 2019: President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi arrived in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa on Saturday to succeed his Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame on Sunday in the chairmanship of the African Union Assembly of Heads of State and Government for one year.
The assembly will convene in a closed meeting as Kagame will present his achievements during his term in 2018. Afterwards, the 32nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union will kick off to conclude on Monday. The summit has as theme “The Year of Refugees, Returnees, and Internally Displaced Persons: Towards Durable Solutions to Forced Displacement in Africa.”
This is the fourth Egyptian chairmanship of the union. Before it was disbanded in 2002 and turned into the African Union, The Organization of the African Unity was once chaired by late President Gamal Abdel Nasser and headed twice by late President Mohamed Anwar al-Sadat.
Egypt, Angola, South Africa, Algeria, and Nigeria are the top contributors to the union’s budget. Egypt’s share is 12 percent.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed will hold an official dinner for African heads of states participating in the summit on Saturday.
Meetings on the sidelines
Sources told Egypt Today that a tripartite meeting would be held on the sidelines on Sunday between the heads of state of Egypt, Ethiopia, and Sudan to be followed by a press conference.
The three leaders will discuss mutual relations, the 32 summit’s agenda, and developments in the continent in terms of counterterrorism, attempts to establish peace and security, and resolution of armed conflicts.
That is in addition to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). The three leaders will hold talks on the results of meetings held by the ministers of foreign affairs and irrigation of their states. They will also tackle the updates on the foundation of a mutual fund to finance infrastructure projects in the three countries.
Presidency Spokesperson Bassam Rady told media that President Sisi would meet President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo Felix Tshisekedi, and the Secretary General of the United Nations Antonio Guterres on Saturday.
Rady said that a presidential delegation from the Democratic Republic of the Congo had visited Cairo 10 days ago, and that President Sisi expressed Egypt’s to the Nile Basin country’s stability.
The president is accompanied by Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shokry; Minister of Health and Population Hala Zayed; Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research Khaled Abdel Ghaffar; Minister of Electricity and Energy Mohamed Shaker; and, Chief of Intelligence Abbas Kamel.
CAIRO - 9 February 2019: In December 2017, Egypt was elected during a closed meeting on AU institutional reform to chair the African Union Assembly of Heads of State and Government for a year starting February 10. President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi has already headed to the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa to receive the chairmanship from his Rwandan counterpart Paul Kagame.