The Southern African Development Community (SADC) remains committed to working with the African Union Commission (AUC) and continues to feed into continental integration agenda in terms of peace and security and governance architecture, SADC Executive Secretary, Her Excellency Dr. Stergomena Lawrence Tax, has said.
H.E Dr Tax said this during the virtual courtesy call paid by Ambassador Bankoie Adeoye, the new AU Commissioner for Political Affairs, Peace and Security on 19th March, 2021.
Dr Tax also indicated that while SADC continues to cooperate with the AUC and is highly appreciative of the support rendered to the Region, there is a need to create synergies between the AUC and Regional Economic Communities (RECs) such as SADC to avoid overlaps on planned activities. She cited the need to adhere to the principle of subsidiarity. To this effect, it was agreed to convene a technical meeting to propose concrete areas of cooperation to be implemented in a coordinated manner.
Ambassador Adeoye thanked the Executive Secretary for the warm welcome and said he was pleased to introduce himself and reaffirm the AUC's continued commitment to working with the RECs. The Ambassador agreed with Dr Tax on the need to adopt a joint coordinated approach on the implementation of agreed activities between the AUC and the RECs.
He highlighted that the AUC is exploring the possibility to establish a platform for AU and RECs on regional mechanisms on peace and security, and governance in order to come up with joint planning and programming. He described RECs as building blocks for the AU's internal growth, peace, security and stability.
The two parties, among others, discussed terrorism as an emerging threat to regional peace and security and as such, committed to engage in bilateral consultations in an effort to counter terrorism.
The purpose of the meeting was to discuss development cooperation issues that are of mutual interest to both SADC and the AUC, including issues of peace and security, political dialogue and terrorism.