SADC leaders speak on democratic transitions

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Tiri Masawi

 

Windhoek - Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi and South African Foreign Minister Naledi Pandor have made a firm commitment together with regional leaders to continuously uphold democratic transmissions and democratic processes in the region.

 

Speaking at the inauguration of President Hage Geingob in Windhoek, Namibia, Masisi said the SADC region has adopted a notion of “silencing the guns” and promoting democratic transitions of power in all member countries. 

 

"We are proud to have a region where former and current presidents sit together and still believe in democracy. We do not want a future where we spend time interfering in internal political disputes," Masisi said.

 

He also called for the SADC region to continuously co-operate on issues relating to free movement of people and goods as well as fostering economic growth. 

 

Pandor also applauded Namibia as a pinnacle of democracy.

“We view Namibia as a shining beacon of democratic transitions and the country continues to live this in both words and action. We call upon the region to continue in this trait," she said.

 

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa   made a passionate plea to members of SADC to continuously fight for the removal of an economic embargo slapped on his country by the United States of America and the European Union. 

"Zimbabwe will continue to rely on your support for the removal of the illegal economic embargo on our country. I appeal to you my brothers to stand in solidarity with us as we will also continue supporting you in developing a prosperous region," Mnangagwa said.

 

Zimbabwe was slapped with sanctions by the EU and USA and Namibia has always stood head and shoulder supporting Zimbabwe against the economic embargo. 

Mnangagwa, who is the chairperson of the SADC Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation, added that his country cherishes the peace and tranquillity in the region. 

Southern African leaders also called for the region to unite in combating Covid-19 as well as continue to build towards a prosperous region.

The leaders were attending the inauguration of Namibian President Hage Geingob for his second and final term as the country’s president. 

Mnangagwa said the SADC region remains one of the most united region on the African continent and should work closely in dealing with challenges, including the spread of Covid-19. 

 

"The world is currently experiencing challenges from the Covid-19. This is a real challenge that we need to deal with as brothers.  Zimbabwe stands ready to work with our neighbours to improve the standard of living for our citizens," he said.

 

 Masisi also weighed in saying the SADC region has adopted a theme of silencing guns and improving democracy. 

 

“We have enjoyed the peace since the attainment of independence and we continue to prosper. We are working as a region to deal with the challenges of Covid-19 as well as other challenges facing us. We are happy to stand as brothers in the most challenging time in the world,“ Masisi said.

 

The same sentiments were also echoed by South African Foreign Affairs Minister Naledi Pandor as well the Angolan President Joao Lourenco.

 

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