Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

SADC meeting steers clear of Zim crisis

A Southern African Development Community (SADC) Council of Ministers meeting in Lesotho on Thursday steered clear of the political crisis in Zimbabwe.

The meeting reviewed last year’s heads of state and government summit decisions to see how far the SADC had gone in economic integration before the next ministerial meeting to be held in the near future.

In an interview, the South African Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Aziz Pahad said: ”This was really a technical meeting. Yes, Zimbabwe is represented by a full delegation consisting of a minister and a delegation of officials.

”What is happening in Zimbabwe is an issue that is on everybody’s minds. South Africa has taken its own position on Zimbabwe. We have said quite consistently that we call for the respect of the law by all sides and we call for no violence against anybody.”

Pahad said it was the duty of South Africa and other countries in the region to create conditions for the Zimbabweans to solve their own problems.

Referring to media reports that Angola was to send about 3 000 troops into Zimbabwe, Pahad said: ”We know about these reports, but we cannot verify them.”

On the current political crisis in Lesotho, which led to five opposition political parties staging a sit-in in the house of Parliament and calling for a three-day national strike, Pahad said the SADC secretariat was working hard to ensure the crisis was resolved peacefully.

”We are really happy with the progress made in Lesotho. Lesotho has gone through difficult times. We think the elections were free and fair.

”There are some differences about proportional representation and the SADC secretariat has been intervening — that is why the three-day strike was called off — and conditions have been created for all parties to dialogue.”

Asked if SADC can play any useful role in resolving the current political impasse in the kingdom, Pahad indicated that SADC would assist where there were differences.

”We hope that this small matter about proportional representation can be resolved with the assistance of SADC. The executive secretary of SADC has been coming here a lot before and after elections. He has managed to get the confidence of the parties and I believe that together we can ensure that any

outstanding issues are resolved.”

The closed meeting would end late on Thursday night. — Sapa

Subscribe for R500/year

Thanks for enjoying the Mail & Guardian, we’re proud of our 36 year history, throughout which we have delivered to readers the most important, unbiased stories in South Africa. Good journalism costs, though, and right from our very first edition we’ve relied on reader subscriptions to protect our independence.

Digital subscribers get access to all of our award-winning journalism, including premium features, as well as exclusive events, newsletters, webinars and the cryptic crossword. Click here to find out how to join them and get a 57% discount in your first year.

Related stories

WELCOME TO YOUR M&G

If you’re reading this, you clearly have great taste

If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to the Mail & Guardian for less than the cost of a cup of coffee a week, and get more great reads.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here

Advertising

Subscribers only

The South African Bone Marrow Registry celebrates 30 years of...

‘It’s not drilling into bones!’: Misconceptions keep donors away, says SABMR, but a match outside of a patient’s family is a needle in a haystack

R500-million Covid-19 Gauteng hospital contract was irregularly awarded — SIU

The bank accounts of Pro Service Consulting and Thenga Holdings have been frozen

More top stories

With its industrial base decimated, SA’s economy needs real change...

Speaking at a book launch on Tuesday, the finance minister said a focus on manufacturing is critical to stem the country’s deepening unemployment crisis

Defence team cagey about Zuma’s health after state advised he...

The former president was absent from court, but his counsel argued that health matters be left aside, so as to hear his case for the removal of Billy Downer

The South African Bone Marrow Registry celebrates 30 years of...

‘It’s not drilling into bones!’: Misconceptions keep donors away, says SABMR, but a match outside of a patient’s family is a needle in a haystack

New clean fuel standards could be the end of refineries...

In the absence of mechanisms to recoup investment into cleaner fuels, refineries may be faced with tough decisions
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…
×