By Hilary Mare
DEPUTY Prime Minister and Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah, has called on SADC to adopt the concept of financial burden sharing in its developmental synergies.
Addressing delegates at the occasion of the SADC Council of Ministers, earlier this week, Nandi-Ndaitwah added that the sharing can best be realised through partnerships and joining of hands between public and private sectors for common developmental goals.
Following decisions by Heads of State and Government at the 2015 summit at Victoria Falls, the SADC region has been seized with regional industrialisation and integration, which demands for the operationalisation of the implementation of SADC industrialisation.
“In carrying out our regional developmental agenda, we are also informed by continental and global agendas. I can refer here to the AU Agenda 2063 with particular reference to aspiration 6 which clearly states that we want: “An Africa, whose development is people-driven, relying on the potential of African people, especially its women and youth, and caring for children”.
“It is also very imperative to take note that, the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals that highlight all areas of sustainable development. We need also to follow the development in the implementation of the UN General Assembly resolution that decaled 2016-2025 the third industrial Development Decade for Africa to see how best our region can benefit,” added Nandi-Ndaitwah.
In relation to the youth, Nandi-Ndaitwah said: “It is a hard reality that we cannot industrialise the region or Africa unless we invest on infrastructure development. In order to ensure sustainable Industrialisation and development, we need our own knowledge. To that end, we must invest on our youth through education, skill training and motivate them to be innovative and entrepreneurs. In creating our own pool of knowledge, we will also ensure our region‘s effective participation in the global industrial value chain.” She said.
She went on to add that it is important to remind ourselves that our youth represents the largest proportion of our nations.
“As put by Dr Sam Nujoma, Founding President of Namibia, the youth are the strength of this nation. They are our future leaders. They bring unique perspectives that we need to take into account when we plan our future destiny”. Those words are in line with the SADC declaration on Youth Development and Empowerment signed in 2014.
Although the declaration commits member states to economically empower the youth, there are no clearly defined action plans that accompany it.
“Let us at this stage note that, the Commonwealth 2016 Global Youth Development Index ranked SADC Member States as very low. Such an outcome underscores the need for an Action Plan to accompany the 2014 Declaration that could implement and rollout activities aimed at mainstreaming youth empowerment to speed up our Industrialisation process,” concluded Nandi-Ndaitwah.
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