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Ramaphosa praises SADC Parliamentary Forum for its work

Ramaphosa praises SADC Parliamentary Forum for its work

South Africa- The President of the Republic of South Africa, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, has expressed his appreciation and support for the outstanding work of the SADC Parliamentary Forum (SADC PF) in entrenching democracy in the region.

President Ramaphosa said this after meeting a high-level delegation of the SADC PF composed of Speakers of National Assemblies in four of the 16 SADC Members States at Mahlamba Ndlopfu in Pretoria today. He said the discussions on the establishment of the SADC Parliament should be taken to the next level.

The five-member SADC PF delegation of speakers was led by the President of the SADC PF from Angola, Dr Fernando da Piedade Dias dos Santos, Ms Baleka Mbete of South Africa as the host, Prof. Peter Katjavivi of Namibia, Justice Dr Patrick Matibini of Zambia, as well as the Acting Secretary of SADC PF, Ms Boemo M Sekgoma. The delegation briefed the President on progress made in the transformation of the SADC PF into a SADC Parliament, in an effort involve SADC Parliamentarians in regional integration and development efforts.

The Speakers were also upbeat after meeting President Ramaphosa, saying there is a strong cause for optimism going forward, with Speaker Mbete describing the meeting’s outcomes as “an accomplishment of the mandate” given by the SADC PF and a good step towards the desired outcomes of the SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government scheduled to gather in Namibia later this week. “I am looking forward to the outcomes of the Heads of State and Government Summit of SADC, as a culmination of many years of hard work and lobbying to reach sufficient consensus on the establishment of a SADC Parliament,” said Speaker Mbete.

The Speaker of the Parliament of the Republic of South Africa has joined the final push for the establishment of a SADC Parliament with appropriate authority to drive regional integration and development. The Acting Secretary of the SADC PF was also happy with the outcomes of the meeting with the President saying there is clear leadership on maximizing the role of legislatures in improving the lives of people in the SADC region.

The leadership of SADC PF has been on a road show to brief Heads of State on their efforts to transform the SADC PF to a SADC Parliament and has already covered many SADC member states. APO

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SADC Correspondent

SADC correspondents are independent contributors whose work covers regional issues of southern Africa outside the immediate Namibian ambit. Ed.