By ZBC Reporter
SADC chairperson Dr John Magufuli says the region is enjoying unparalleled peace and security compared to any other regions on the continent; intra-regional trade is increasing, extreme poverty is declining, income is rising and the level of our international competitiveness has been enhanced.
He said this in a statement to celebrate SADC Day which falls on the 17th of August.
“SADC has come a long way since its inception in 1980. In this respect, it is heartening to note that, over the past four decades, our Organization has recorded some important milestones in different areas of cooperation: from peace and security, to infrastructure development, trade and industry, agriculture and food security, health, education, gender and youth empowerment. Indeed, our region is now, more than ever, enjoying unparalleled peace and security compared to any other regions on the continent; intra-regional trade is increasing, extreme poverty is declining, income is rising and the level of our international competitiveness has been enhanced,” he said.
Dr Magufuli commended the efforts by our Founding Fathers, as well as the hard work of successive generations of leadership of the community for achieving these important milestones.
“We should always guard against complacency since much still needs to be done in order to realise our Founding Fathers’ dream and vision. On the 17th August 2019, I assumed the Chairmanship of our Organization. It has been a very exciting year and yet a very difficult one. As you are all aware, over the past 8 months, the world has been facing an acute and unprecedented health and economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In this regard, I wish to take this opportunity to extend my deepest condolences to those who have lost loved ones; and I wish a speedy recovery to those afflicted by the disease. Similarly, I would like to pay tribute to all SADC Member States for taking appropriate measures to fight this disease,” he said. “Indeed, thanks to our combined efforts, we have been able not only to reduce the impact caused by this pandemic, but also to be able to continue implementing our regional programmes and projects, including our theme for the past one year, which was “A Conducive Environment for Inclusive and Sustainable Industrial Development, increased intra-regional trade, and job creation”.
“All Member States have continued to implement regional programmes and projects in line with the theme; and the results have been outstanding. Additionally, we have continued to implement our Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP), which ends this year; 2020; and also embarked on developing the new one for the next 30 years, which was anchored on “the SADC We Want”. This has shown how committed our region is in fulfilling its integration agenda. In this regard, going forward, I call upon all SADC Member States to continue to work together not only in addressing the COVID-19 impacts but also in preparing the post-pandemic situation of our Community. This, I believe, would be a nobler way to celebrate this SADC Day,” he said.
By ZBC Reporter