BRICS/Africa: South Africa’s Approach Is an Attempt to Distort Established Multilateral Processes – Expert

The holding of the “BRICS/Africa” meeting without the prior consultation and active participation of the key nations making up the BRICS grouping, reflects a clear attempt to distort established multilateral processes, where consensus and cooperation between members should be the fundamental pillars, said political scientist Cherkaoui Roudani. South Africa’s attempt to orchestrate the “BRICS/Africa” meeting without the endorsement of the main BRICS member states reveals a well-considered intention to mount a diplomatic challenge with ramifications for the vast African continent, Roudani told MAP news agency. This questionable approach seems to reflect a strategy potentially aimed at exploiting existing divisions or creating new diplomatic fractures in an already complex global, regional and continental context. Moreover, this irrational and disconcerting South African diplomatic approach comes on top of other maneuvers that have caused confusion, disbelief and incomprehension, he observed. According to Roudani, the manipulative dimension underlying this approach is part of a diplomatic game logic in which the “selective” selection of participants could be used to serve specific interests or to encourage rivalry dynamics between players. In this sense, he said that South Africa was seeking to strengthen its own influence and impose its vision on strategic issues of major importance on the African continent. Roudani stressed that the invitation to this meeting was not an initiative of the BRICS or the African Union, but came from South Africa in its own right. In this respect, he pointed out that Morocco’s reaction highlights the diplomatic, political and strategic stakes involved in Pretoria’s controversial diplomatic move. By refusing this invitation, Morocco is asserting the fundamental importance of national sovereignty in its foreign policy decisions, he said, noting that beyond preserving its national interests, the Kingdom is seeking to ensure the safeguard of its crucial, vital and strategic interests, as well as its diplomatic positioning. “In sum, the organization of this meeting by South Africa without the concerted participation of the principal members of the BRICS cannot be perceived simply as an isolated act, but rather as an elaborate diplomatic act, demonstrating a deliberate desire for manipulation and subterfuge,” he said, noting that this machination raises concerns about the nature of regional and multilateral relations, while highlighting the issues of balance and diplomatic integrity that run through the African continent and beyond.