- Malawi's President Bingu wa Mutharika has become the new head of the African Union (AU) taking over from his Libyan peer Moamer Kadhafi.
Mr Mutharika received the highest continental baton in Addis Ababa at the weekend during the AU Summit, with support from the Southern African bloc leaders.
Known for his anti-corruption drive back in Malawi, the new AU President has accepted the challenge of driving Africa’s quest for development through its own resources.
"Africa is not a poor continent, but the African populations are poor when we have actually a lot of natural resources," he said in his acceptance speech, further reminding that many of the African children were making enormous contributions in the western world through their knowledge, skills and talents.
The 76 years old coming in as the new head of AU has also allayed fears that Mr Kadhafi was trying to run for a second term in the continental leadership under his running banner of the United States of Africa.
Mr Kadhafi has long been criticised quietly on the diplomatic corridors of sometimes taking his powers too far and making unilateral decisions especially when handling crises in the member states.
During his farewell speech, the Libyan leader criticised African leadership saying for as long as the continent does not speak in one voice, it would remain forever under the influence and exploit of the other world powers.
The AU’s presidency is rotational amongst the continental regions on an annual basis.
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