President Edgar Lungu has arrived in Gaborone, Botswana to attend the 35th Ordinary SADC Heads of State and Government Summit which convenes on 17th August, 2015.
ZANIS reports from Botswana that the Presidential Challenger Jet carrying the Zambian Head of State touched down at Sir Seretse Khama International Airport at 15:48hours local time on 16 AUGUST, 2015 .
Newly appointed Defence Minister Richwell Siamunene and the Presidents Special Assistant for Press and Public Relations Amos Chanda are accompanying the President.
Botswana’s Minister of Youth, Sport and Culture Thapelo Alopeng, Zambia’s Acting High Commissioner to Botswana Wesley Chikwamu and Minister of Foreign Affairs Harry Kalaba received the Zambian Head of State.
Others included the Ministry of Commerce, Trade and Industry Permanent Secretary Siazongo Sikalenge and other senior government officials.
And as part of his engagement while in Botswana, President Lungu was later 16 AUGUST, 2015 evening expected to meet the Zambians resident in Botswana.
On 17 AUGUST, 2015 , President Lungu will be among the SADC Heads of State who will be attending this year’s Summit.
Zambia’s participation in this year’s 35th Ordinary SADC Heads of State and Government Summit reaffirms the country’s commitments to the ideals and objectives that of SADC whose establishment was pioneered by among other countries, Zambia included.
During the Official Opening of the 35th Ordinary SADC Heads of State and Government, Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe, who is the SADC chairperson is expected to handle over the SADC Chairperson’s Badge to the Incoming Chairperson, Lt. Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama, President of Botswana.
This year’s SADC Heads of State and Government Summit is being held under the theme: “Accelerating Industrialisation of SADC Economies through Transformation of Natural Endowment and Improved Human Capital.”
The Summit is expected to review progress made since the last SADC Heads of State and Government held in Zimbabwe, 2014.
The deliberations, among others, will also focus on the Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap, and the Finalisation of the Revised Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP) 2015-2020.
Other issues to be deliberated on will include the region’s political, socio-economic development issues, regional integration, budgeting, human resources and administration and the implementation of decisions passed by previous Summit.
Member States that arrived on 16 AUGUST, 2015 are Angola, Namibia, South Africa and Lesotho while Zimbabwe arrived on 15 AUGUST, 2015 .
The SADC Heads of State and Government Summit convenes every year, usually in August but can convene at any time depending on the urgency of issues that may arise.
The Heads of State and Government Summit which is SADC’s highest decision making body, adopts decisions, elects the rotating SADC chairperson ever year and appoints the executive secretary.
The 35th SADC Heads of State and Government Summit is expected to close business on Tuesday, 18th August, 2015.
PICTURE BY EDDIE MWANALEZA