Motlanthe invites SADC team to monitor elections

President Kgalema Motlanthe has invited the Southern African Development Community (SADC) to send a team to observe the country’s upcoming elections, the Department of Foreign Affairs said on Tuesday.

Spokesperson Ronnie Mamoepa said Motlanthe, in his capacity as state president and the current chairperson of the SADC, had requested an observer team in line with SADC’s principles and guidelines governing democratic elections.

“In this regard, President Motlanthe requested His Majesty King Mswati III, in his capacity as the chairperson of the SADC Organ Troika on politics, defence and security, to constitute such an observer team,” said Mamoepa.

Swaziland was the current chair of the Troika.

Meanwhile, the upcoming SADC summit would be held in Mbabane, Swaziland.

Mamoepa said the summit, convened to consider the economic recovery aid package for Zimbabwe and to deliberate on the unconstitutional transfer of power in Madagascar last week, would be held in Swaziland on March 30.

He said the change in venue, from Cape Town to neighbouring Swaziland, was as a result of administrative changes.

The SADC summit of heads of state and government would be preceded by a meeting on March 29 of the SADC council of ministers chaired by South African Foreign Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.

“With respect to Zimbabwe, the SADC finance ministers had met recently in Cape Town, where they made recommendation to the SADC council of ministers meeting regarding the economic recovery plan for Zimbabwe,” said Mamoepa.

The SADC council of ministers meeting would present a report on the economic recovery plan to the heads of state and government for ratification.

The SADC Troika, which met in Mbabane last week, would present a report on the political situation in Madagascar as well as the proposed way forward out of the current crisis.

This might include sanctions placed on Madagascar’s transitional president Andry Rajoelina, who conducted a military coup and usurped power from President Marc Ravolomanana last week.—Sapa

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