Namibia takes over SADC committee chair

The 38th SADC summit started in Windhoek yesterday and will run until 18 August.

10 August 2018 | International

The 38th Southern African Development Community (SADC) summit started with the handing over of the Standing Committee of the Senior Officials chairpersonship yesterday.

Namibian international relations permanent secretary Selma Ashipala-Musavyi took over the chairpersonship of the standing committee from outgoing chair Sandile Schalk from South Africa.

In her acceptance speech, Ashipala-Musavyi said Namibia was honoured to assume the chairpersonship of the organisation, whose objectives are to address socio-economic challenges in the region.

Other objectives include achieving development and economic growth, alleviating poverty and enhancing the standard and quality of life of the people of southern Africa and supporting the socially disadvantaged through regional integration.

The summit is taking place under the theme 'Promoting Infrastructure Development and Youth Empowerment for Sustainable Development' and will end on 18 August.

Ashipala-Musavyi said the theme illustrates that infrastructure development and youth empowerment are vital in driving SADC toward industrialisation and addressing the socio-economic realities of the continent.

“I am pleased to state that there have been notable progress in many sectors, especially infrastructural connectivity, economic development and trade, as well as ensuring that peace and security prevails in the region,” she said.

She added that it is crucial that the organisation implements programmes and strategies that member states have commonly adopted, for the benefit of all its people.

Schalk said the organ has a collective responsibility to substantially improve the quality of life, opportunities and prosperity of the people of southern Africa through the realisation of sustainable economic development and regional integration.

He said by following the priorities set out in fundamentally adopted frameworks including the Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan, the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap and the Strategic Indicative Plan of the Organ, it continues to advance the region.

“These strategies and frameworks are all linked to the overarching SADC objectives of regional political and security stability and economic development through increased market integration,” Schalk said.

The chairperson and vice-chairperson of the standing committee are appointed from the member states that hold the chairpersonship and vice-chairpersonship of the council.

NAMPA

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