Communique from the eighth SADC People’s Summit

by Sep 3, 2012All Articles

8th-SADC-peoples-summitWe the more than 250 representatives of grassroots movements, community-based organizations, peasant and small farmers movements, faith based organizations, women’s organizations, labour, student, youth, economic justice and human rights networks and other social movements met in Mumemo centre, Maracuene, Mozambique, from 15-16 August at the eighth People’s Summit incorporating the People’s Dialogue organized by the Southern Africa People’s Solidarity Network (SAPSN), supported by the local host organizations UNAC, Forum Mulher, JA, Livaningo, Accord and Via Campesina to bring the SADC Community’s attention to challenges that affect our daily lives.

We deliberated on the theme “Reclaiming SADC for People’s Development – A People’ SADC: Myth or Reality?”

Concerned with undemocratic governance, impunity of corporates in Extractive industries, global climate catasrophe, exploitation of natural resources, dominance of corporates in the energy sector, patriarchy, increasing violence against women and children, displacement of communities by corporates with active collaboration of SADC governments, increasing food insecurity, damage to ecosystems, growing inequalities, decline in health and education service provision and standards, deprivation of sustainable livelihoods, extensive land grabbing by corporates and governments collaborating actively with traditional leadership, continued recolonisation through for example bilateral agreements like the Economic Partnership Agreements and shady deals with the BRICS countries; the continued violations of economic, social, cultural and environmental rights, excessive dependency on export oriented economies and finally the continued dominance of the free market dogma and ascendancy of neo-liberalism.

Recognising our efforts in the resolution of crisis in the hotspots of the region

We resolve to:

Strengthen campaigns against Free Trade Agreements, privatisation, GMOs, dictatorship, land grabbing, gender-based violence and all forms of discrimination.

And show solidarity with the struggling people of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Swaziland

We call on SADC heads of states

  • Urgently dismantle patriarchal systems that aid and abate the discrimination of people using arguments rooted in backward culture and traditions
  • Be Transparent and accountable to the people of SADC in agreements for extractive industries and stop the land deals
  • Develop and enforce policies that protect the rights of women and children
  • Stop the pursuit of neoliberal social and economic policies.
  • Stop the land grabbing and utilise the land and natural resources for the development of the poor and marginalised.
  • Stop the deployment and use of violence to suppress people’s democratic rights
  • To adopt and aggressively implement lasting solutions to the political hot spots and crisis areas of the region without procrastination.
  • Make vigorous efforts to stop the pillaging of the environment
  • Uphold the principle of democratic, free and fair elections in Swaziland
  • Guarantee food sovereignty through agrarian reform and the establishment of indigenous seed banks
  • Be transparent and accountable in investment agreements
  • Embark on a wealth redistribution and transformative agenda through for example the removal of investment incentives and tax holidays for corporations
  • Enhance their capacity to collect taxes from errant corporations whose techniques for tax avoidance are now well documented.
  • Meet people’s needs such access to clean water, health services, education, food and energy rather than investing in mining, fossil fuel based energy and the mega projects that benefit corporations and elites.
  • To reorient infrastructure development for the promotion of regional integration and not designed to ship resources out of SADC to serve the local people
  • Stop the reliance on export-driven extractivism of our natural resources.
  • Promote and support agro-ecological farming.
  • Implement the protocol on the free movement of people in SADC
  • Ensure that SADC national focal points function effectively and serve the people.
  • Mobilise domestic resources and undertake innovative financing to meet budget requirements to meet the Abuja and Maputo declarations respectively
  • Ensure that leaders of nations that have benefitted, or continue to benefit, from a development path based on high greenhouse gas emissions, need to acknowledge and repay ecological debt owed to vulnerable communities and the planet.

“NOTHING ABOUT US WITHOUT US!”

Isabelle Dos Reis

Via Campesina Office for Africa 1 (Southern, Eastern and Central Africa)

Maputo – Mozambique

16 August 2012

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