However, the three former diplomats who have been shortlisted for the final pick to head the secretariat has no Ghanaian in there.

The exercise to choose the boss of the secretariat is expected to end by February 9, 2020.

The chosen candidate will be expected to start work from March 2020 in Accra, four months before the full implementation of the agreement.

About 121 applications were received. Out of this number, 2 Ghanaians applied but could not advance after the second screening process which reduced the number of applicants to 30 earlier this week.

The three finalists are Cecilia Akintomide from Nigeria. She has served as a former Vice president of the African Development Bank and also as General Secretary of the bank. She is also a practicing lawyer in Lagos state.

The second person is South African Wamkele Mene. The 40-year-old has worked as the Head of Mission to the World Trade Organisation for South Africa.

The third finalist is Faustin Luanga from the Democratic Republic of Congo. He has over 20 years of experience working in diplomatic and economic relations both national and international.

Luanga has also been instrumental in the drafting of the continental free trade agreement as the country's representative on the board. He served as the Economic Advisor to President Joseph Kabila.

The Heads of State of the African Union who are meeting in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia will decide which of the three heads the agreement.

After one of the three finalists is selected, an official announcement will be issued by the Commissioner for Trade and Industry, Albert Muchanga on Sunday, February 9.