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    21 Nov, 2021

    SADC and UNICEF concretise relations

    The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) the has provided steadfast support to the Southern African Development Community (SADC)  for a long time and is still continuing to assist the Region through technical support in implementing key projects and programmes across Southern Africa and beyond,SADC Executive Secretary, His Excellency Mr. Elias M. Magosi, has said

    H.E Magosi was speaking during a courtesy call by the UNICEF Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa, Mr Mohammed Mallick Fall,  in Gaborone, Botswana, on 17th November 2021 during which they discussed   cooperation with focus on areas which require strengthening and exploration of  possible means to enhance collaboration.

    The Executive Secretary recognised the good work by UNICEF for the  inputs made where it really mattered through direct support to SADC Member States on issues of health and nutrition, water and sanitation, education and school feeding, HIV and AIDS, and social  and child protection. 

    At regional level, he noted the joint implementation of the SADC Food and Nutrition Security Strategy and the Guidelines on Food Fortification, among others. He urged UNICEF to continue its support to the Region in facilitation of local capacities in production of medicines, vaccines, nutrition commodities for the treatment of malnutrition, and access to antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) for treatment of HIV and AIDS.

    H.E Magosi further called for more collaborative efforts to be channeled to the development of value chains in agro-processing, mineral beneficiation, pharmaceuticals and mechanism for the involvement of the private sector in the SADC integration agenda. He  emphasised the need to revisit the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) and its action plan to priorities key interventions, and with a view to sustain progress in the fight against COVID-19. 

    Mr Fall said that his organisation was delighted to have been working with SADC in collaboration with other United Nations (UN) agencies across different areas to address challenges of poverty, violence, disease and discrimination, with a focus on nurturing and caring for children. 

    He  underscored the need to priorities future action through highly visionary and integrated approaches, highlighting  the need to enhance local productive capacities to reduce reliance on imports for essential commodities, and to address the welfare and employability of young people through responsive and collaborative programmes. 

    Mr Fall  appreciated the efforts made by SADC to promote peace and security in the Region, including progress being made in the Republic of Mozambique to bring normalcy in the Cabo Delgado region. He highlighted the need to intensify protection of women and children, including responses to extend psychosocial support as may be required. 

    The meeting also discussed humanitarian issues, drought and disruptive climate change effects, which are inducing unprecedented disasters, economic challenges and serious vulnerabilities across many communities and households. The technical teams from both parties were mandated to further engage on the issues discussed and to report on progress. 

    The Regional Director was accompanied by UNICEF Representative to Botswana and SADC, Dr Joan Matji. The meeting was also graced by senior officials from both parties. 

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