SADC extends SAMIM deployment


Soldiers from eight southern African countries will remain in Mozambique for an as yet unknown length of time, an extraordinary summit of Southern African Development Community (SADC) Heads of State and Government has agreed.

One of 16 points in an SADC communique issued post the summit in the Malawian capital Lilongwe this week reads: “Summit noted good progress since deployment of the SADC Mission in Mozambique (SAMIM) and extended its mandate with associated budgetary implications and will continue to monitor the situation going forward”.

This will see soldiers from Angola, Botswana, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Lesotho, Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia remain in Cabo Delgado supporting Mozambique’s FADM and a contingent of Rwandan troops in the ongoing military effort to rid the province of Al Sunnah wa Jama’ah (ASWJ) insurgents, called “terrorists” in official SAMIM military communiques.

Another decision taken by the regional bloc summit was to approve “the Framework for Support to the Republic of Mozambique in addressing terrorism which outlines, among others, actions for consolidating peace, security and the socio-economic recovery of Cabo Delgado”.

The SADC military deployment to Mozambique is, the Summit noted, a first for the regional bloc. In this regard the communique states: “Summit commended the SADC region for its unwavering commitment to peace and security and for using its own resources in addressing and combating terrorism in Cabo Delgado, a unique precedent on the African continent”.

SADC member states providing personnel, equipment and financial support, and additional pledges toward deployment of SAMIM were commended for their commitment to regional peace and security and “especially the enormous sacrifice made despite the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on economies”.

The high level gathering commended the Mozambican government for initiating and implementing the Cabo Delgado Reconstruction Plan to enable the delivery of social services and amenities. It also welcomed an unnamed initiative for an international conference to support economic and social reconstruction in Cabo Delgado.