The Southern African Development Community (Sadc) is today commemorating Sadc Day with a tribute to citizens who died of Covid-19 or are infected by the pandemic as well as the region’s fallen founding fathers.
The fallen Sadc founding fathers include former president of Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe, who died in September last year and former Tanzanian president Mwalimu Julius Nyerere who died 21 years ago.
A statement from Sadc signed by chairperson John Magufuli, who is Tanzanian President, acknowledged that over the past eight months, the world has faced an unprecedented health and economic crisis caused by Covid-19.
Reads the statement: “I wish to take this opportunity to extend my deepest condolences to those who have lost loved ones; and I wish a speedy recovery to those afflicted by the disease.
“Similarly, I would like to pay tribute to all Sadc Member States for taking appropriate measures to fight this disease.”
Going forward, the chairperson urged all Sadc Member States to continue to work together not only in addressing the Covid-19 impacts but also in preparing the post-pandemic situation of the bloc.
Last week, Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Eisenhower Mkaka said after a virtual meeting of Sadc Council of Ministers that matters related to Covid-19 are of particular interest to Sadc Member States, including Malawi.
“We looked at reports from different sections at the secretariat like matters of Covid-19 as in how they are impacting the region as well as individual countries,” he said. The council also called for a strong and unified approach in response to Covid-19 in the region.