SANF 22 no 17 – by Clarkson Mambo
The new SADC Executive Secretary visited Zimbabwe on 11-12 May for consultations and courtesy call on President E.D. Mnangagwa, and used the opportunity to visit related institutions and partners who work with SADC in various ways.
His Excellency Elias Magosi is on a series of working visits to consult with Heads of State, government officials, and key regional institutions, on advancing regional integration.
He visited the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) and the SADC Regional Peacekeeping Training Centre (RPTC) where he held consultations with the Commandant, Rear Admiral Gottlieb Pandeni from Namibia, as well as visiting SADC knowledge partner, the Southern African Research and Documentation Centre (SARDC).
H.E. Magosi said that SARDC is an important partner in promoting integration in southern Africa through the provision of reliable and relevant information for decision-making.
“The job of the SADC Secretariat is to produce strategies, but in terms of implementation a lot is done at Member States level,” Magosi said.
“We depend on institutions such as yours (SARDC) that can generate information, conduct research and make the information available to us. The key thing that we want is proper reporting on implementation, the extent of movement of key fundamental principles of integration, governance, peace and security.”
H.E. Magosi said his main priority, at the helm of the Secretariat, is to continue and consolidate the gains made to date, and ensure that citizens of the region fully enjoy the benefits of belonging to a shared community in southern Africa.
The Secretariat therefore will support and facilitate Member States to sign and ratify all SADC protocols and agreements, he said, to make sure that the regional integration agenda is advanced from “stated intention to actual application.”
H.E. Magosi added that SADC will continue to work with research and academic institutions to track results and progress towards deeper integration through the smooth implementation of protocols and policies.
He indicated that he is impatient to see more action in the domestication and implementation of regional agreements and plans already approved.
“And the end of it all, the job is to hold the region accountable on all the different stages of regional integration…we must talk to progress or lack thereof and analyse, and then the principals will make the decisions.”
He noted as a priority the expansion of intra-regional trade within SADC, based on the related industrialisation and infrastructure development.
He commended the SARDC Executive Director, Munetsi Madakufamba on the long-time productive partnership with SADC and the results achieved, including tracking gender equality in the region. He said the work being done on the history of region is essential and should ensure the documenting of current history “as we are making history now”.
Mr. Madakufamba said SARDC stands ready to collaborate with SADC, and will continue to track progress and advance the regional integration agenda.
He showed H.E. Magosi around the designer building, Julius K. Nyerere House, which is environmentally friendly and architecturally designed to accommodate SARDC’s various institutes and research modules, using local materials.
This showcases what the Executive Secretary said later about starting at home by identifying and using what we have, and increasing trade with our neighbours in the region before reaching out to the continent and the world.
SARDC is an independent regional knowledge resource centre that focuses on policy issues in southern Africa and undertakes research that informs development.
The centre has a strong track record of experience and expertise in research, collecting, analyzing, writing, documenting and disseminating knowledge from a regional perspective in a way that is accessible for different target audiences, including policy and decision makers in the public and private sectors, parliaments, academics, development agencies, the media and the public.
SARDC is made up of several specialist institutes including the economic institute; a gender institute; and a regional centre for environment, water resources and climate change; and an institute for China Africa studies in southern Africa, as well as a history institute.
Zimbabwe becomes the sixth country that H.E Magosi has visited since his appointment to the helm of the Secretariat by the 41st SADC Summit held in Lilongwe, Malawi in August 2021.
He has so far been to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia and South Africa, in addition to Botswana where he is based.
These six countries make up the SADC Double Troika, which is currently spearheading all political and policy decisions on regional development and integration in the period 2021-22.
The SADC Double Troika comprises of the SADC Summit Troika which provides leadership of the SADC region, and the SADC Summit Troika of the Organ which is responsible for maintaining peace and security in the SADC region. These positions rotate among member states.
The SADC Summit and the Organ Troika are separate, and the chairperson of the Organ does not simultaneously hold the chair of Summit and vice versa.sardc.net
42nd SADC Summit Publication 2022, click here
Southern African News Features offers a reliable source of regional information and analysis on the Southern African Development Community, and is provided as a service to the SADC region.
This article may be reproduced with credit to the author and publisher.
SANF is produced by the Southern African Research and Documentation Centre (SARDC), which has monitored regional developments since 1985. Email sanf[at]sardc.net
Website and Virtual Library for Southern Africa www.sardc.net Knowledge for Development