Chakwera waves goodbye
By Chimwemwe Njoloma & Mphatso Nkuonera, MANA
President Lazarus Chakwera left on Wednesday for Mozambique to attend the extraordinary summit of the Southern Africa Development Committee (SADC) Heads of State and Governments.
The summit, which also marks the regional body’s 40th anniversary, will among other key issues discuss the regional response and support to the Republic of Mozambique in addressing terrorism, regional food and nutrition security, gender and food development, regional integration, cooperation and development.
The Summit will review progress made in the implementation of the theme of the 40th SADC summit which was endorsed by the SADC summit in August 2020.
As part of the 40th anniversary commemoration, the summit will launch three publications by Mozambique President, Filipe Jacinto Nyusi in his capacity as the chairperson of SADC.
Last month, President Chakwera was part of the Heads of State and Governments who attended the extraordinary Double Troika Summit to discuss the establishment and operationalization of the humanitarian and emergency operation center and review the security situation in Mozambique.
The Republic of Mozambique and several SADC member states have declared days of national mourning in honor of the late first President of the Republic of Zambia, Kenneth Kaunda.
The SADC flag and those of SADC member states shall be flown at half-mast during the extraordinary summit and preceding meetings.
The Summit Heads of State and Governments is the supreme policy-making institution of SADC with the responsibility for the overall policy direction and control of functions of the community in accordance with Article 10 of the SADC treaty.
President Chakwera was seen off at Kamuzu International Airport (KIA) by the Vice-President, Saulos Chilima and other senior government officials and is expected to return home on Thursday morning around 11:00am through KIA.
Meanwhile, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Eisenhower Mkaka has said Malawians should rally behind the SADC plans of achieving peace and sustainable energy, as key vehicles for the block to achieve tangible development.
He made these remarks on the sidelines of SADC Council of Ministers meeting being held in Maputo, Mozambique, in preparation for the summit.
“As Malawi takes over the SADC chairmanship, we all have a duty to rally behind the President Dr Lazarus Chakwera’s leadership, so that together we help him achieve the expected results.
“We are looking at energy and security issues and bang heads on how we can together as a block deal with insurgency in the northern Mozambique so as to win a peaceful environment in line with the SADC objectives and mission,” he said.
Mkaka added that the SADC block would look into issues of employment and free trade, agriculture among others, which are at the epicentre for the economic growth of the region.
“We agreed to manage and provide reliable power supply regionally with its head office in Namibia. We want every country to be spared from this development strategy because we are aiming at moving forward as a united block.”
The Minister added that, being the fourth time for Malawi to be on the helm of SADC leadership, it was a sign of confidence and privilege from the organ’s member states.
“I can assure the region that all is set for Malawi to host the summit, in compliance with SADC secretariat requirements, that are demanded when any of its member country is hosting the summit.
“Malawi will benefit both directly and in directly, therefore I call upon all Malawians to work together as my Ministry. We need to have awareness campaigns on the specific objectives and mission for the SADC region for our people to benefit more,” he said.
Mkaka added that through this SADC meeting, President Chakwera, will officially invite Heads of State and Government from member states to the next SADC sitting slated for August, which will take place in Malawi.