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New African Union Chair’s Focus To Include Food Security; First Ladies Discuss HIV/AIDS

The African Union (AU) Summit concluded in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on Tuesday with newly elected AU chairman Bingu Wa Mutharika, of Malawi, encouraging African leaders to make agriculture and food security a top priority, Angola Press reports (2/2).

“Mr. Mutharika, a former World Bank economist, said he would insist on urgent steps to improve Africa’s food security and energy generation capacity,” VOA News reports. “I’m still determined as chairman of the African Union, to put measures together to ensure that within five years, no child in Africa should die of hunger and malnutrition,” Mutharika said. According to VOA News, Mutharika also cited improving political stability on the continent as a major goal (2/2).

Nam News Network/Burnei FM examines the work of the Organization of African First Ladies, which held a general assembly meeting in Addis Ababa, in conjunction with the AU Summit. According to the organization’s president, Ethiopian First Lady Azeb Mesfin, the organization prepared a strategic plan to prevent and treat HIV/AIDS and promote women’s empowerment, the news service reports.

“Azeb said the strategic plan included issues such as reproductive health, women’s empowerment, prevention of gender-based violence, and maternal mortality,” the news service writes. The article details how the African first ladies are working with other health leaders in the fight against HIV/AIDS and includes comments from U.S. Under Secretary of State for Democracy and Global Affairs Maria Otero about PEPFAR (2/2).

The Times of Zambia/allAfrica.com reports on Zambian First Lady Thandiwe Banda’s address to the meeting of the first ladies, where she discussed food security, climate change and Zambia’s efforts to reduce maternal mortality (2/2).