South African defence and security officials yesterday met their Mozambican counterparts to discuss fighting piracy, transnational crime and corruption. The third session of the Republic of South Africa – Republic of Mozambique Joint Permanent Commission on Defence and Security Ministerial met at the Sheraton Hotel in Pretoria yesterday.
“The commission noted the successful deployment of and conducting of joint naval and air patrol[s] on the Mozambique waters [sic] that it has significantly reduced piracy activities. To support this effort a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by the two countries which to enhance the effort to combat piracy activities,” the SA Department of Defence says in a statement. “The commission further emphasised the importance of involving Tanzania in an effort to deal with piracy along the east coast and urged that given the urgency of the matter, the Trilateral MoU on Maritime Security between the RSA, Mozambique and Tanzania must be finalise[d] as soon as possible.
The South African delegation was led by Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Lindiwe Sisulu and included Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Minister of Home Affair; Siyabonga Cwele, Minister of State Security; Thabang Makwetla, Deputy Minister of Defence and Military Veterans; Andries Nel, Deputy Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs; MM Sotyu, Deputy Minister of Police and senior Government Officials.
The Mozambique delegation was led by Filipe Jacinto Nyusi, Minister of National Defence; Honourable Gregório Leão, General Director of the State Security Service; Jose De Jesus Mateus Pedro Mandra, Deputy Minister of the Interior and senior government officials.
In addition to piracy, the commission deliberated on a wide range of issues pertaining to defence, public and state security “and noted with satisfaction the progress made in these areas”. It also reviewed progress made in the implementation of resolutions passed at the 2nd Session of the South Africa – Mozambique Joint Permanent Commission on Defence and Security held in Matola, Maputo Mozambique in 2009.
The commission underscored the need to conduct joint operations to curb various forms of crimes. These crimes include theft and vehicle smuggling, stock theft, smuggling of illicit goods, fire arms and ammunition and non-ferrous metal. The commission further recommended that the sharing of intelligence and information must be strengthened in order to curb drug trafficking and determine the routes and trends followed by drug traffickers.
“The commission underlined the need that rhino poaching be considered a priority crime for joint operations. That a Technical Committee must be formed to finalised a strategy to protect wildlife, which should be done by the end of February 2012 and that the Technical Committee must report back on progress in the next meeting [sic].”
Concerning the influx of illegal migrants into SADC region, the commission urged the law enforcement agencies of the two countries to exchange information on the movement of illegal immigrants and to formulate common strategies. These should include the enactment of legislation dealing with human trafficking and irregular migration.
The commission expressed satisfaction with the commitment and cooperation demonstrated by the security sector and called on it to continue to nurture this relationship for the benefit of the two countries. It further noted the significant achievement by the public security sector in dealing with the transnational crimes and urged all law enforcement agencies to intensify anti-corruption strategies.