South Sudan President has pledged support for Raila Odinga’s bid for the African Union Commission (AUC) chairmanship bid.

In a statement after meeting Kiir, Raila revealed that the South Sudan leader has vowed to garner the entire East Africa Community (EAC) bloc’s backing for his bid.

“I had a highly productive meeting in Juba with President Salva Kiir Mayardit of South Sudan. I am deeply grateful for your hospitality and support. Your commitment to garnering the entire EAC bloc’s backing for my AUC Chair candidacy is greatly appreciated,” Raila stated.

Based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, AUC is the African Union’s (AU) secretariat and undertakes the day-to-day activities of the Union.

Currently, Raila is facing competition from Djibouti’s Foreign Affairs Minister Mahmoud Ali Youssouf, Somalia’s former Foreign Affairs Minister Fawzia Yusuf Adam and Seychelles’ former Vice President Vincent Meriton.

The four candidates from the Eastern Africa region are seeking to succeed the current chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat, who has held the position since 2017.

In a statement on March 15, 2024, the executive said the region will be the only one submitting candidates for the position.

“The African Union Executive Council today unanimously adopted a critical decision that it is the turn of the Eastern Africa region to submit candidates for the position of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC). The elections will be held in February 2025,” the statement read in part.

The decision also provides that the Northern Africa region will front candidates for the Deputy Chairperson while the other three regions, Central, Southern and Western, will compete for the six positions of commissioners.

The campaign to replace the current AUC chair Moussa Faki is set to officially begin once all interested candidates submit their applications by May this year.

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