HANDING OVER STATEMENT BY H.E PRESIDENT DR. HAGE G. GEINGOB AT THE 39TH SADC SUMMIT, 17 AUGUST 2019, DAR ES SALAAM, THE UNITED REPUBLIC OF TANZANIA

69355854_1916498868452793_4909361053432807424_n 69212675_1916496961786317_561852086766010368_n 68538251_1916497101786303_688155998220713984_n (1)

Your Excellency, Dr. John Joseph Pombe Magufuli,

President of the United Republic of Tanzania, and
Incoming Chair of SADC,
Your Majesty King Mswati III, of the Kingdom of
Eswatini,
Your Excellencies, Heads of State and Government,
Your Excellency President of the African Development
Bank,
Your Excellency, Executive Secretary of SADC,
Your Excellency Executive Secretary of Economic
Commission for Africa,
Honourable Ministers,
Excellencies, Ambassadors and High Commissioners,
Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Representatives of Regional and International
Organisations,
Delegates from the SADC Member States,
SADC Secretariat Officials,
Members of the Media,
Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is a great privilege for me to welcome you to this 39th Ordinary Summit of the SADC Heads of State and Government in the United Republic of Tanzania. Let me
express my gratitude to my counterpart, His Excellency,
President Dr. John Joseph Pombe Magufuli and the
people of the United Republic of Tanzania for the warm
reception and hospitality accorded to all of us since our
arrival. We are gathered here in this historic city of Dar
Es Salaam, which was not only home, but actual sanctuary to many of us who sought to escape the brutality of apartheid colonialism. The teachings of Mwalimu Julius Nyerere continue to inspire us. He not only believed in the inalienable right of every African person, but together with the heroic people of the United Republic of Tanzania, he walked the talk.
Mwalimu, together with the Founders of SADCC, had a
clear vision that only the full realisation of the right to
self-determination would pave the way to effective
regional integration.

Allow me to express my gratitude, Your Excellencies, for
the support you accorded to me as Chairperson of SADC
and to Namibia, since we assumed the Chair of SADC in
August 2018, in Windhoek. It has been an honour to work with you all in advancing the cause of Regional Integration, in order to better the lives of our people.

In our quest to entrench democratic values and
constitutionality in our region, six (6) Member States,
namely, the Kingdom of Eswatini, Democratic Republic
of Congo (DRC), the Republic of Madagascar, the Union
of Comoros, and the Republic of Malawi and Republic of
South Africa held successful elections since the last
Summit. Allow me to congratulate the Governments and
the people of these Member States for holding credible
and peaceful elections, and for upholding SADC
democratic principles. For the first time since independence, we have witnessed a peaceful transfer of power in the DRC, marking a new era for socioeconomic prosperity, peace, and political stability for the country. Indeed, democracy has continued to mature in our region, as demonstrated by the fact that a number of Heads of State are attending this 39th
Ordinary Summit, for the first time following the successful elections in their countries. Join me in congratulating Their Excellencies Felix Tshisekedi of the DRC, Andry Rajoelina (pronounced Rajoweli) of the Republic of Madagascar, Prof. Perter Mutharika of Malawi; Azali Assoumani of the Union of the Comoros, and Cyril Ramaphosa of the Republic of South Africa. In SADC, we shall always be a family characterized by
common values, a common destiny for a common
people, emerging from a common history. To this end,
we are encouraged by the recent signing of the Peace
Accord in the Republic of Mozambique, a further
demonstration that SADC places a high premium on
peace and stability as a precursor for development in
region.

Your Excellencies, Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen
The year 2018/19 marked the fourth year of the
implementation of the SADC’s Revised Regional
Indicative Strategic Plan (RISDP) 2015-2020 since its
adoption by the SADC Extraordinary Summit of Heads of
State and Government in April 2015. Although the year
was marked by challenges, resulting from global
uncertainties of the commodity markets, trade tensions,
food insecurity and natural calamities, our region
recorded some significant achievements towards the
attainment of regional commitments.

Climate Change is real and our region can attest to this
fact. Between January and April 2019, the region faced
several weather related phenomenon, namely, Tropical
Cyclone Desmond, Enawo, Idai and Kenneth. As a result
of these events, we witnessed extensive flooding in
Comoros, Mozambique, Tanzania, Madagascar, Malawi
and Zimbabwe. Heavy rains also affected Kwazulu
Natal, in South Africa.

The Cyclones killed over 1,000 people; injured an
estimated 3,000 people, damaged economic
infrastructure, education and health facilities and
destroyed over 800,000 hectares of cropland as well as
crops and seed stocks. Over 3.3 million people were
affected and required immediate humanitarian
assistance, including food, shelter, clothing, potable
water, sanitation and medical support.

In addition, below average rainfall and prolonged dry
spells resulted in reduced agricultural production, thus
negatively affected pasture and livestock, as well as
water supply for human, and other uses. Member
States affected by severe drought conditions include
Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia and Zimbabwe. In
the meantime, Botswana, Lesotho and Namibia havedeclared States of Emergency and have started
implementing response plans.

In response to these national disasters, the following
measures were undertaken:

i. Contingency funds amounting to US$500,000 were
released towards emergency relief efforts of
Tropical Cyclone Idai to complement efforts by
Member States, national and international
partners;

ii. A Regional Floods Appeal was launched in response
to Tropical Cyclone Idai which sought US$323
million to support victims with immediate needs
and resilience building actions;

iii.Post-Disaster Needs Assessment (PDNA) was
conducted in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe
for reconstruction and rebuilding following the
Tropical Cyclone Idai.

I wish to express sincere appreciation to SADC Member
States for their prompt, effective and generous
response in providing humanitarian assistance to the
affected countries.

Disaster risk reduction should be a regional priority, as
it is clear that natural disasters can have a significant
negative impact on our economies and people. This
therefore calls for deliberate measures to address the
impacts of climate change, while also mainstreaming
the Disaster Risk Reduction at both the regional and
national levels. Disaster Risk Reduction strategies
contribute to the decrease of disaster risks and the
negative impacts of disasters in order to attain
sustainable development and eradicate poverty. The
following are some of the measures which are to be
considered as part of the mitigation of the impacts of
climate change and risk reduction:

i. Pursuing sustainable development, by among
others reducing deforesting, and encouraging
reforestation to reduce greenhouse gases that
contribute to climate change.

ii. Drawing lessons from the previous disasters to
strengthen the regional preparedness and response
mechanisms, and early warning.

iii.Putting in place measures to ensure timely
response and provision of humanitarian assistance
and restoration of livelihoods to the affected
communities;

iv.Raising awareness in the region on how to mitigate
the effects of climate change.

Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen

The region boasts an active young population where
two-thirds of its citizens are below the age of 35 years,
thereby presenting opportunities for the fortunes of the
region to be drastically transformed into greater
economic growth and prosperity. Hence, 38th SADC
Theme on Promoting Infrastructure Development And
Youth Empowerment For Sustainable Development was
the focus of a number of programmes and activities
across all sectors in 2018/19, with emphasis on youth
engagement. The Theme also gave impetus for the full implementation of the SADC Declaration on Youth
Development and Empowerment adopted by Heads of
State and Government in August 2015. Some of the key
initiatives implemented to operationalize the theme
include the following:

i. Participation of youth in various forums, dialogues
including Water, Energy, ICT, Transport and
Employment sectors.

ii. A youth coordination structure was established for
Water, Energy and Food Security (WEFS) Nexus
Infrastructure Project.

iii. A SADC Framework for Monitoring, Evaluation and
Reporting (MER) on youth programmes, among
others, at national level was established to
facilitate evidence based youth policy development
and implementation.

iv. A Conceptual Framework for the implementation of
SADC Regional Programme on Youth Innovation
and Entrepreneurship aimed at ensuring
sustainability of the 38th Summit theme was also
developed.

v. The High-level roundtable was conducted with a
theme, “Upscaling Sustainable Energy for the
Industrialisation Agenda and Youth Empowerment
for the SADC Region”.

Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen

While youth actively contribute as political actors,
innovators, entrepreneurs and peace builders, they
continue to face disproportionate social, economic and
political barriers, which prevent them from unleashing
their full potential and meaningfully contributing to
Sustainable Development.

Unemployment, underemployment, lack of skills and
access to capital, result in youth experiencing social and
political challenges such as conscription into armed
rebellions and exposure to drug use and risky
behaviour. Additionally, our youth continue to migrate
within the continent as well as abroad, in search of
greener pastures, making them vulnerable to
exploitation, extreme abuse and mistreatment among
other things.

The full realisation of SADC’s Vision and Mission are
hinged on deliberate and coordinated efforts to
accelerate social development that prioritises youth
development and empowerment. We need to continue
enhancing youth participation in policy formulation and
to develop programmes in areas that affect the lives of
young people in the entire SADC region.

Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

As we are all aware, the main objective of SADC is to
promote sustainable and equitable socio-economic
growth and development to ensure poverty eradication
and enhancing the standard and quality of life for the
people of Southern Africa by supporting the socially
disadvantaged through regional integration.

To achieve the stated overarching objective, the
Secretariat continued to play an instrumental role
during the year 2018/19, in facilitating and
implementing various interventions within the Pillars of
the Revised RISDP.

Industrialization remained remained at the core of the integration agenda of SADC and central to the diversification of regional economic growth. Some of the achievements
recorded include the development of a draft Protocol on Industry, and a draft Regional Mining Vision (RMV) and
Action Plan. We have also set the tone in the area of
value chains, particularly in mineral beneficiation,
pharmaceuticals, and agro-processing. The much
needed profiling in these areas, has been completed, we
now need to focus on mobilising the private sector,
while we continue putting in place the needed
supportive infrastructure as well as enhancing a
conducive business environment. Such initiatives are
critical in the implementation of value chains, and
fostering our industrialisation objective.

Opportunities in value-addition and beneficiation in the
region are immense and can be positively exploited
through a regional approach taking into account the
resource endowments, comparative advantage,
productive capacities, and requisite skills of Member
States. Member States are expected to align their value addition, beneficiation and industrialization strategies
in line with the aspirations of the regional industrial
framework. Hence, the development of the regional
value-chain concept needs to be domesticated, in order
to promote the implementation of the SADC
Industrialization Strategy.

As a region, SADC has to assume a pivotal role in
ensuring that there is an effective system of facilitating
and monitoring intra-regional trade and cross-border
business transactions with a view to enhancing intraregional
trade, while identifying challenges, and
designing sustainable strategies and solutions. In
addition, SADC Member States are also expected to
implement reforms in the trade sector and strengthen
institutions in order reduce barriers to intra-regional
trade and cross-border business transactions.

Closely linked to Industrialization is the development of
infrastructure in support of regional integration.
Infrastructure development is the catalyst for regional
integration, and therefore lies at the very heart of our
efforts to promote high levels of inclusive growth and
development in the region. It is imperative that we
continue to accelerate the implementation of
infrastructure projects in SADC, particularly through
mobilizing adequate financing from domestic, private
and innovative sources of funding. To this end, Namibia
recently inaugurated the new container terminal of the
Walvis Bay Port with a capacity to handle 750 000
twenty foot containers. This is in line with our aspiration to deepen connectivity and enhance regional
integration.

The onus is on our respective Governments to provide
an enabling environment for infrastructure
development by putting in place robust processes,
systems and institutions, as well as leveraging and
harmonising the existing structures at our disposal.
Governments should also promote policies that
encourage the promotion of local capacity through
indigenous or local “champions” who, through their
entrepreneurial efforts, can drive regional infrastructure
projects that are both, financially profitable to the
private sector, and socially beneficial to our economies
and citizens.

Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen

Despite the achievements recorded, our region is still
facing some challenges towards the implementation of
Revised Regional Indicative Strategic Plan and Strategic
Indicative Plan for the Organ. It is therefore incumbent
upon all SADC Member States, to fully take advantage
of low hanging fruit and leverage the capacity of the private sector, women and youth, in order to tap into their potential to support our developmental agenda.

Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,

As we are revising the revised Regional Indicative
Strategic Plan (RISDP) and the Strategic Indicative Plan
for the Organ (SIPO) in 2020, we should prioritize in
order to leverage our scarce resources.
Therefore as SADC formulates its Vision and Strategic
Plan, it needs to take hard decisions on which areas to
prioritize. It is tempting to include in SADC’s agenda,
issues that in fact are best handled at the national level.
Some of the socio-economic issues clearly fall into that
category, while others are better handled at the
regional level. Programmes and activities to be
undertaken at all the levels should contribute towards
the realization of SADC’s ultimate goal, namely the
improvement of the standard and quality of life of the
people in the region. This has to be guided by the
principle of subsidiarity, by allowing the Secretariat to
focus on regional activities that will facilitate regional
integration with visible results and positive impacts to
SADC economic growth and development and allowing Member States to implement programmes that are best
implemented at national level.

The revision of our strategic plan for integration and
peace and security is an integral process, and active
involvement of all stakeholders is paramount to the
successful formulation of the Vision and the Strategic
Plan, given the diversities of socio-economic orientation
of and levels of economic development in individual
Member States and respective people.

Your Excellencies,
The year 2020 will mark the 25th commemoration of the
Declaration adopted at the Fourth World Conference on
Women in 1995. Together with the International
Community, we will be taking part in the activities for
the year and we must accentuate the significant
contribution of our region in the advancement of gender
equality and women empowerment, particularly in
decision making and economic empowerment. This will
ensure that our achievements are reflected in the
national, regional and global review processes.

Your Excellencies,

In line with SADC’s history of commitment to liberation
and to the principle of self-determination on which
SADC was founded, which is also true to the aspirations
of our forbearers, a SADC Solidarity Conference with the
people of the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic was
held on 26 March 2019, in Pretoria South Africa. The
Conference was a watershed moment in asserting our
resolve as a region that liberation, political freedom,
and the right to self-determination are integral to who
we are as a community. On behalf of SADC, allow me to
extend our heart-felt appreciation to the people of the
SADC region, through Your Excellencies for your
commitment to the legitimate struggle of our brothers
and sisters in Western Sahara. May I also extend our
deep gratitude to the government and people of the
Republic of South Africa for hosting the conference, and
all the countries and Institutions for their invaluable
contribution and participation. I believe that SADC, the
African Union and the United Nations, will remain
resolute in our joint efforts, and will implement the
conference’s resolutions, which will lead to a positive,
peaceful and permanent solution in Western Sahara.

Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen

In conclusion, I wish to acknowledge the great strides
we have made as a region and the role played by the
SADC Secretariat under the leadership of SADC
Executive Secretary, Dr. Stergomena Tax. Their
professionalism and commitment in ensuring that SADC
continues to pursue its mandate is the pride of our
region.

I also wish to applaud the collaboration and support of
our international cooperating partners, who continue to
make a significant contribution towards sustainable
development in our region.

I wish to thank Your Excellencies for the confidence you
placed in me and the people of Namibia during our tenure as Chair. Namibia is proud to have pulled its weight in our race towards economic prosperity and regional integration. It gives me great pleasure to pass the baton, to the Incoming Chairperson, His Excellency, and my Dear Brother, Dr. John Joseph Pombe Magufuli.

I believe that given his wisdom and dedication to the
acceleration of development and welfare of the citizens of our region and continent, he will advance our regional integration agenda to higher heights.

It now gives me great pleasure therefore, to officially hand over the Chair of SADC to His Excellency, Dr. John
Joseph Pombe Magufuli, President of the United
Republic of Tanzania.

I wish us all productive implementation of our programmes and the SADC development and integration agenda during the coming year.

God bless you all and thank you!