So when Ping’s job came up again for renewal, South Africa mounted a campaign to replace him. AU members did not accept South Africa’s alternative, the formidable former foreign minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, but they did prevent Ping from getting the two-thirds majority vote required for another term. When the final votes were counted, and the AU was left without a leader, witnesses told the Monitor that South Africa’s delegation was dancing in the hall.
Ms. Dlamini Zuma, meanwhile, says that she will try again for the chairmanship, when Ping’s extended six month tenure ends.
One thing that most African diplomats can agree on these days is that Africans need to protect their interests against the power of former colonial powers, such as France, Britain, Germany, Italy, Portugal, and their perceived supporters, such as the United States. Another thing many Africans can agree with is that they still need outside foreign assistance, as long as that assistance comes with few strings attached. That’s why China, and to a lesser extent, India are welcomed in Africa.