The 42nd Ordinary Summit of the Heads of State and Government of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) has elected the President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Félix Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombo, as chairperson of SADC.
Meanwhile, the President of the Republic of Angola, João Manuel Gonçalves Lourenço, has been elected as the incoming chairperson of SADC.
Tshisekedi succeeds the President of the Republic of Malawi, Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera.
The summit has also elected Dr. Hage G. Geingob, President of the Republic Namibia, as chairperson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, and Hakainde Hichilema, the President of the Republic of Zambia, as the incoming chairperson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation.
Geingob succeeds President Cyril Ramaphosa as the outgoing chairperson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation.
The 42nd Ordinary Summit of the Heads of State and Government of SADC was held on Wednesday in Kinshasa, the capital of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
The summit extended its appreciation to the government and people of the Democratic Republic of the Congo for a successful 42nd SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government.
The chairperson of SADC, Félix Antoine Tshisekedi Tshilombo, President of the Democratic Republic of the Congo, expressed gratitude to all the Heads of State and Government for attending the 42nd Summit of SADC Heads of State and Government,” SADC said in a statement.
The summit also approved the appointment of Angele Makombo N’Tumba, from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, as the new SADC Deputy Executive Secretary for Regional Integration.
The summit has applauded the successful general elections in the Republic of Zambia in August 2021, and the peaceful transition of power.
The summit noted the readiness of the Republic of Angola and the Kingdom of Lesotho to hold their general and national assembly elections on 24th August 2022 and 7th October 2022, respectively, and wished the two Member States peaceful elections.SADC said.
The summit received a report from the outgoing chairperson of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation, President Ramaphosa.
He was commended for his outstanding leadership and continued efforts to address peace and security threats during the year, notwithstanding the challenges posed by COVID-19.
The summit also received a progress report from the SADC Facilitator to the Kingdom of Lesotho, President Ramaphosa, on the implementation of SADC decisions in Lesotho.
While noting the progress made, it urged the government to expedite completion of the ongoing reforms, and to continue with peace, transitional justice and reconciliation process to engender national unity, and bring about national healing and cohesion.SADC said.
The summit commended the SADC Facilitator and the Facilitation Team for their excellent leadership and role in supporting the government and people of Lesotho in the process of the multi-stakeholder national dialogue and the adoption of the comprehensive reforms proposals.
The summit approved the establishment of an oversight committee made up of the SADC Panel of Elders (PoE) and the Mediation Reference Group (MRG) to ensure continuity and oversight on the implementation of reforms in the Kingdom of Lesotho.SADC said.
The summit has also received updates on the security situation in Cabo Delgado province in the northern part of the Republic of Mozambique.
The summit approved the extension of the SADC Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM) and its related processes.
The summit commended SAMIM Personnel Contributing Countries (PCCs) for their solidarity and sacrifice in supporting the mission, and expressed condolences to the governments and families of the nine deceased SAMIM personnel, who died in the theatre of operations.SADC said.
The summit expressed concern and solidarity on the latest security developments in eastern DRC.
The summit mandated the chairperson of the Ministerial Committee of the Organ, supported by the Organ Troika FIB Troop Contributing Countries (TCCs), to engage the UN 4 Secretary General on the margins of the UN General Assembly in September 2022, to explore all avenues to support efforts towards improving the security situation.SADC said.
The summit welcomed a brief report presented by the government of the Kingdom of Eswatini regarding the security situation in that country.
While condemning the violence, the summit mandated the chairperson of the Organ to convene an Extra-ordinary Summit of the Organ Troika plus Eswatini, at a date to be determined, aimed at finding a peaceful and lasting solution to the security challenges facing the country.
The summit further expressed concern on the continued maritime security threats affecting the Region’s development aspirations, in particular, those emerging in the western part of the Indian Ocean.
In this regard, the summit urged Member States to expedite the implementation of the SADC Maritime Integrated Strategy and its Action Plan.SADC said.
The summit has also welcomed the establishment of the SADC Regional Counter-Terrorism Centre (SADC-RCTC) in the United Republic of Tanzania (URT), as an institution that coordinates counter terrorism activities in the Region.
Member States have been urged to strengthen cooperation and information sharing on terrorism, radicalism and violent extremism.