The role of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Regional Peacekeeping Training Centre is to provide training for peace support missions in the region. It forms part of the core objectives of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security.
The centre was established in Zimbabwe in 1996 following an initiative by Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom to organise the first peacekeeping seminar in the region in 1995. In June 1999, the official Regional Peacekeeping Training Centre was built in Harare, Zimbabwe, with funding provided by the Government of Denmark, and falls directly under the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security. The hosting agreement with Zimbabwe was signed in May 2005.
Regional Peacekeeping Training Centre objectives are in line with the core objective of the Strategic Indicative Plan for the Organ (SIPO), which aims at creating a peaceful and politically stable and secure environment.
Specifically, Regional Peacekeeping Training Centre objectives are:
- To promote regional cooperation in peace and security amongst SADC Member states;
- To build capacity in conflict prevention and conflict management including Peace Support Organ;
- To train peacekeeping practitioners and provide training, enabling all SADC Member States to take part in Peace Support Organs;
- To assist planning for SADC peacekeeping exercises and operations;
- To develop and deliver peacekeeping training in line with the Southern African Development Community, African Union and United Nations standards; and
- To implement the objectives of the Strategic Indicative Plan for the Organ (SIPO) and the SADC development agenda related to Peace and Security.
To be a reputable and responsive Centre of Excellence in training, research and development of capacities and expertise in peace support operations.
The mission of the Regional Peacekeeping Training Centre is to study the theory and practice of Peace Support Operations (PSO) and to coordinate peace support training in the SADC region as mandated by the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security.
Since its establishment, the Regional Peacekeeping Training Centre has remained a regional training centre within the framework of the SADC peacekeeping capacity building. The following main achievements have been recorded since 1995:
- Delivery of training courses for peacekeeping practitioners from the SADC region and other parts of Africa has remained the core activity of the Centre;
- The Centre now plays a key role in the implementation of the SADC Brigade;
- The Centre has participated in the preparation and running of all major peacekeeping exercises conducted in the region including, the Blue Hungwe in Zimbabwe (1997), Blue Crane in South Africa (1999), Tanzanite in Tanzania(2002) Exercise THOKGAMO (2005) in Botswana and Ex-Golfinho in South Africa in 2009;
- The Centre is now part of a SADC structure falling under the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security a regionally recognized Centre of Excellence in Peace Support training; and
- The Centre has continued to be one of the main implementing entities of the SADC Strategic Indicative Plan for the Organ (SIPO) in the area of peace keeping training.