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Zimbabwe plays advisory role in Mozambique crisis

by Staff reporter
20 Aug 2020 at 16:15hrs | Views
ZIMBABWE is set to continue playing an advisory role in efforts to help Mozambique fight terrorist groups wreaking havoc in the northern parts of the country, Foreign Affairs minister Sibusiso Moyo, pictured, has said.

This comes as Mozambique recently assumed the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) chairmanship during the just-ended 40th Sadc Ordinary Summit of Heads of State and Government, while Zimbabwe handed over its chairmanship of the Sadc Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation to Botswana.

Speaking during a post- Cabinet media briefing in Harare on Tuesday night, Moyo further said the insurgencies in Mozambique would not affect the country's position as the Sadc chair.

"Zimbabwe's involvement will be within the context of Sadc. So we will still play an advisory role, but the decisions we will make will be on the basis of what Sadc has decided," Moyo said.

"We have protocols within Sadc and one of those is that the chairmanship of Sadc is going to be held on a rotational basis between the member countries.

"These have been the principles in place. The second point that I want to make is that the decision to allow Mozambique to chair Sadc was taken last year in Dar es Salaam and it is taken one year in advance.

"The question of whether the situation in Cabo Delgado might impede the chairmanship of Mozambique is not within the consideration of Sadc. It was realised that Mozambique will still have the ability to chair and steer the organisation's economic agenda. So, in as far as Sadc leaders are concerned Mozambique is capable," Moyo added.

Mozambique has been battling to contain militant insurgents that have pledged allegiance to the Islamic State which began attacking villages in the northeast in late 2017.

Early this year, Zimbabwe, Zambia and Botswana committed to help Mozambique deal with the terrorist situation during an Extraordinary Organ Troika Summit hosted by Zimbabwe as the former chair of the Sadc Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation.

Defence minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri said Zimbabwe would continue to play an active role in the Sadc Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation at three levels.

"You want to appreciate that there is a Sadc tradition which honours the outgoing chair by making sure that you remain within the Troika organ. So, we have relinquished our position as chair, but we remain for another additional one year working together with Botswana, Zambia and South Africa.

"We have been playing a major role as the chair of troika and Botswana obviously will count on us due to the fact that we steered the ship for the past year. Our role will be advisory within the Troika. They will want to continue with the same programmes which we started," Muchinguri-Kashiri said.

"We are very comfortable with the three levels at which we will be present; the first level being the heads of State level. We will continue interacting and our president will continue giving advice. We also have an official's technical team which will be meeting regularly to share information and also strategise on how best they can work very closely with Mozambique.

"We are very happy that Mozambique has assumed chairmanship of Sadc and that will be an advantage to Mozambique because in that chair they will be able to consult widely. So, Zimbabwe will still remain at the heads of state level, executives, and ministers level," she added.

Source - dailynews

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