As SADC is grappling with the issue of peace and security in certain parts of the region, regional leaders will meet in the Congolese capital Kinshasa in a bid to tackle burning issues.
President Cyril Ramaphosa, who is an outgoing chair of the SADC organ for politics, defence and security cooperation, will give a comprehensive report on the state of security.
Once again the issue of peace and security will dominate in Kinshasa as Southern African Development Community (SADC) leaders meet this week.
Some of the hotspots include the instability in the eastern parts of the Democratic Republic of Congo after the re-emergence of the M23 rebels.
There will also be an update on the situation in northern parts of Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado, where a SADC mission is deployed to repel terror attacks and the situation in Lesotho and Eswatini as well.
Ramaphosa will lead the discussions on security.
“We are ending our term in the SADC organ and we are handing over to Namibia as incoming chair and our president will report on the progress that has been made with regards to deployment of personnel from various SADC countries as well as Rwanda where they have bilateral in terms of troops. We must give an assessment as you know that terrorists continue to harm people,” says International Relations and Cooperation Minister Naledi Pandor.
Democratic Republic of Congo President Felix Tshisekedi will take the reins as the new SADC chairperson. He will take over from Malawian President Larazus Chakwera.
Regional leaders will deliberate on promoting industrialisation through agro-processing, mineral beneficiation and regional value chains for inclusive and resilient economic growth.
“We know very well that issues of natural resources in the region have been one of the conflicts triggers and it’s quite important that once SADC members meet in Kinshasa, they must deal with the elephant in the room, manage and harmonise relationships between communities and multinationals that are exploiting resources and they must focus on democracy projects like what we see in Angola and strengthen the 2050 vision and consider the role of civil society as well,” says Advocate Sipho Mantula, Researcher: Thabo Mbeki African School of Public and International Affairs.
The gathering will further focus on the proposed amendment to a protocol on the development of tourism in the region and the amendment to the treaty of the SADC that entails recognition of the SADC parliament as a SADC institution.
VIDEO: SADC heads of states and government meeting – President Ramaphosa to lead the SA delegation to DRC