The Program on Climate Change and Mitigation in the COMESA-EAC-SADC region recently held a meeting with its Development Partners, to present and discuss the 2013 progress report and expenditure as well as the proposed 2014 work plan and budget among other issues.
The meeting which was hosted by the SADC Programme Management Unit (PMU) was held in Pretoria, South Africa on February 5, 2014 and attended by PMUs from Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and East African Community (EAC) as well as representatives of The Department for International Development (DFID), Norway and European Union (EU).
Officially opening the meeting, the Tripartite Programme Co-ordinator/COMESA Climate Change Advisor, Dr Mclay Kanyangarara highlighted the critical importance of the program which is structured to spearhead regional integration and greater coordination of efforts to reduce trans-boundary challenges faced by people of the region.
The Development Partners concurred with Dr Kanyangarara on the importance of the program as a way for enhanced political and socio-economic north – south ties and collaboration towards sustainable development with mutual benefits.
The Development Partners adopted the 2013 progress and expenditure reports whilst highlighting the need to expedite project implementation over 2014, as the program was coming to a close in 2016.
The meeting agreed on strategies that should be employed to enhance program delivery. These strategies included bringing the new SADC and EAC PMUs up to speed by COMESA, engaging and effectively managing consultants, revision of the Log frame, the development of a grants management manual, Improved communication between the Regional Economic Communities (RECs), exchange of ideas and reporting among RECs and DPs, the use of an online reporting system among others.
Speaking at the same meeting, DFID indicated that it will be increasing its support to the Regional Vulnerability Assessment and Analysis (RVAA), by 2.5 Million Pounds, courtesy of the Swiss Government.
Against the backdrop of being one of the Guarantors of the Global Political Agreement (GPA) and in accordance with the SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections, the Southern African Development Community (SADC) was invited by the Government of the Republic of Zimbabwe to observe the Constitutional Referendum held on 16 March 2013.
Guided by the SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections, the Mission deployed twelve (12) teams of observers across all ten (10) provinces of the Republic of Zimbabwe. Observers were given the responsibility to observe the Constitutional Referendum and to give comprehensive accounts of their findings in their areas of deployment in order for the Mission to provide an informed assessment.
The Mission observed that the pre-referendum phase was characterized by a largely tolerant and peaceful civic atmosphere. In general, ZEC, COPAC and other relevant stakeholders conducted their work in a transparent, orderly and professional manner without any hindrance.
In the course of observing the Referendum, the Mission noted that over and above, general adherence to the relevant national legal instruments and the SADC Principles and Guidelines Governing Democratic Elections. The following best democratic practices and lessons in the Zimbabwean Referendum were observed.
Read the FULL Statement of the by the Head of the SADC Election Observation Mission (SEOM) to the Constitutional Referendum in the Republic of Zimbabwe.