South Africa’s Wamkele Mene has been elected as the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFA) Secretary General. Mene was selected after a vote against Nigeria at the African Union Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on Monday afternoon.

Nigeria wanted their candidate and contested for the position against the agreed principle that South Africa would lead the new project. Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi told the SABC’s Sophie Makoena that he was upset that the matter had to be forced to rounds of voting.

Mene was South Africa’s Chief Negotiator in the African Continental Free Trade Area Negotiations. Prior to assuming that position he was a senior trade diplomat, negotiating on behalf of South Africa at the World Trade Organisation.

He holds a LL.M in Banking Law and Financial Regulation from the London School of Economics and Political Science; a M.A. in International Studies & Diplomacy from the School of Oriental & African Studies (SOAS), University of London; and a B.A. Law from Rhodes University.

The video below unpacks what the  objectives of  African Continental Free Trade Area: