A total of 47 countries entered the qualification, including South Africa, which automatically qualified. Libya was not allowed to keep its automatic qualification after being stripped of its hosting rights due to the Libyan civil war. Many teams made their return to the finals in this tournament. The hosts, South Africa will make their return after a 4-year absence. Ethiopia will appear for the first time since 1982 (a 31-year absence). Other teams absent from the 2012 finals that will feature in 2013 are Nigeria, Togo, DR Congo, and Algeria. Cape Verde will make their finals debut. The teams that didn't qualify for this tournament from the 2012 African Cup of Nations were both co-hosts, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea, Libya, Senegal, Sudan, Guinea and Botswana. South Sudan were ineligible to participate as the qualifying competition had already started by the time their membership of CAF was confirmed.
Read more about this topic: 2013 Africa Cup Of Nations