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Uhuru off to South Africa for AU summit

13 June 2015, 12:16 Victor Tinto

Nairobi - President Uhuru Kenyatta has left for Johannesburg, South Africa to attend the 25th African Union (AU) Heads of State and Government Summit.

The President will be among over 50 African leaders meeting at Sandton Convention Center, Johannesburg to discuss the continent’s growth prospects.

The plane carrying the President and his entourage departed Jomo Kenyatta International Airport shortly before 7:00 am. At the airport, President Kenyatta was seen off by the Head of Public Service and Chief of Staff Joseph Kinyua, Chief of Defence Forces, General Samson Mwathethe and leader of majority in Parliament Aden Duale among other senior Government officials.

President Kenyatta has been at the forefront in championing peace and political stability in the horn of Africa, particularly Somalia, South Sudan and now Burundi for sustained economic growth.

The President believes that Africans have the ability to develop imaginative and innovative homegrown solutions to address the myriad challenges facing the fastest growing continent.

The African leaders are meeting soon after this week’s launch in Egypt of a Tripartite Free Trade area (TFTA) spanning the three economic blocs of Africa.

The continental Free Trade Area will aid intra-trade by combining the free trade areas of the SADC, the EAC and the COMESA to create a market of 625-million people with a gross domestic product of more than $1-trillion. TFTA is envisaged as a stepping stone to the continent-wide free trade area by 2017 after more than a decade of plus-five percent a year growth on average in African economies.

South Africa is hosting the Summit after Chad withdrew due to financial constraints. This year’s theme is “Year of Women Empowerment and Development towards Africa’s Agenda 2063”.

Kenya will also seek to have the Internaational Criminal Court agenda discussed at the summit, having already lobbied to have the issue discussed at the summit.

Kenya is looking to have the continent move out of the ICC and be part of a to be formed African Court of Justice.

The government has already donated KES 100 million to help in the facilitation efforts of the new court.

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- MyNews24

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