April 3, 2024

Lesotho becomes the Eleventh SADC Member State to Sign the MoA establishing SHOC as Autonomous Entity

At a momentous occasion on 28 March 2024, Lesotho became the eleventh Southern African Development Community (SADC) member state to sign the Intergovernmental Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) amongst SADC Member States to establish the SADC Humanitarian and Emergency Operations Centre (SHOC), reaching the legal threshold of 2/3 Member States, required for the MoA to enter into force. 

The signing by Lesotho marks a significant step towards a more coordinated regional disaster response meaning that 11 out of 16 member states have signed the Agreement.  Article 17 of the MoA states that the MoA comes into force 30 days after the signature by the 11th country, in this case, this will be on the 28th of April 2024. The MoA will remain open for the Member States that have not yet signed. 

This achievement signifies strong regional commitment to strengthening disaster risk management capabilities across Southern Africa and a testament to SADC's commitment to regional cooperation and its unwavering focus on building a more disaster-resilient future for all its member states.

Upon its operationalisation, the SHOC will function as an autonomous self-accounting entity of SADC, empowered to provide technical support, facilitate resource mobilisation, and coordinate emergency response efforts during disasters.