Minister Zokwana to attend Joint Extra-Ordinary Meeting of SADC Ministers responsible for Agriculture, Food Security, Fisheries and Aquaculture in Swaziland (Ezulwini) 19 May 2017
The SADC Ministers responsible for Agriculture and Food Security form one of the six sectoral and cluster Ministerial Committees. Their main purpose is to addresses issues related to agriculture and food security in the region. They meet whenever there is need, chaired by a member state that chairs the Summit. Due to the drought that affected the region in 2015/16 and the related food security challenges, they have been meeting frequently.
They held their last extraordinary meeting on 16 November 2017 in Ezulwini, Swaziland. During that meeting, they directed the Secretariat to convene for them another extraordinary meeting during May 2017. They are now scheduled to meet in Ezulwini, Swaziland on 19 May 2017.
Due to the drought and accompanying food security challenges, Ministers have been focusing on the regional food security situation under the following issues:
Ministers assess the rainfall situation for specific crop season as forecast by the relevant regional institutions. Ministers then take political decisions on appropriate measures to be taken by member states.
Food security outlook
Ministers assess the situation of food security in the region and take political decisions on appropriate measures to be taken by member states.
SADC Regional Humanitarian Appeal
Ministers assess the effectiveness of the response by Member States, SADC Secretariat, UN Agencies and other stakeholders to drought related disasters and record lessons learned to respond effectively to similar disasters in the future
Regional Transboundary Animal Diseases and Plant Pests and Diseases
Ministers assess the outbreak of animal diseases and plant pests and diseases in the region as they affect food security in the region and take political decisions on appropriate measures to be taken by member states.
Additional information on SADC
The Southern African Development Community (SADC) is a regional organisation consisting of 14 member countries: Angola, Botswana, Congo (DR), Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
The Organization was formed to create a regional community, which would provide peace and security, cooperation in fields of shared interests, and ultimately an integrated economy. It provides a forum for regional planning for self-sustaining development in Southern Africa which is based on collective self-reliance and inter-dependence of Member States.
SADC's Vision is that of a common future, a future within a regional community that will ensure economic well-being, improvement of the standards of living and quality of life, freedom and social justice and peace and security for the people of Southern Africa.
The SADC mission is to promote sustainable and equitable economic growth and socio-economic development through efficient productive systems, deeper co-operation and integration, good governance, and durable peace and security, so that the region emerges as a competitive and effective player in international relations and the world economy.
The regional population is estimated at 277 million. Its Gross Domestic Product at (GDP) was 575,5 US$ billion.
Statistics show that only Mauritius and South Africa have manufacturing sectors at approximately 25% of GDP. There is limited production of diversified range of product in SADC economies.
The region faces many social, development, economic, trade, education, health, diplomatic, defence, security and political challenges. Some of these challenges need collective effort to address them hence cooperation is of importance.
SADC organisational structure is comprised of the following nine (9) institutions:
The Summit which is made up of Heads of State and Government and is the ultimate policy-making institution. It meets at least once in a year.
Council of Ministers which is made by Foreign of Ministers from each member state. It is responsible for overseeing the functioning and development of Organization as well as ensuring proper implementation of policies. It reports to and advises the Summit on policy matters and approves SADC policies, strategies and work programmes and also decides upon sectoral areas of cooperation and the allocation of responsibility for carrying out the sectoral activities. The Council also meets at least once a year.
Sectoral Committees and Commissions may be established as and when necessary, through a convention or other instruments approved by the Summit and ratified by member States. Commissions are regional institutions supported by all member states and they report to the Council.
A Tribunal which ensures adherence to, and proper interpretation of the provisions of the SADC Treaty and subsidiary instruments, and to adjudicate upon disputes referred to it.
The Secretariat: is responsible for strategic planning and management of SADC programmes. Headed by an Executive Secretary, who is appointed by the Summit, the Secretariat is charged with the task of implementing decisions made by the Summit and the Council, and financial and general administration of the Community.
Standing Committee of Officials is made up of Directors � General/ Permanent Secretaries from each member country. This committee acts as a technical advisory committee to the Council to whom it reports. It meets at least once a year as well.
National Contact Points are located in the Ministries/Departments responsible for SADC matters and act as a vital link between other agencies of government and SADC organs.
Source: Government of South Africa