The Speaker of the National Assembly Ms Thandi Modise will tomorrow lead a multi-party parliamentary delegation to the 49th virtual Plenary Assembly of the Southern African Development Community Parliamentary Forum (SADC PF) on the role Parliaments can play in leveraging the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) from Friday, 25 to Sunday, 27 June 2021.
The delegation includes Mr Desmond Lawrence Moela - African National Congress; Mr Tshitekere Baldwin Matibe- African National Congress; Ms Nkhensani Kate Bilankulu - African National Congress; Mr Darren Bergman - Democratic Alliance and Ms Rosina Ntshetsana Komane - Economic Freedom Fighters.
The Plenary Session, to be hosted virtually in collaboration with the Parliament of Botswana, will be held under the theme: "Leveraging the AfCFTA for Post-Covid Economic Recovery in Southern Africa: The Role of SADC Parliamentary Forum and National Parliaments."
Items scheduled during the three-day 49th Plenary Assembly includes an opening ceremony to be addressed by Botswana President, H.E. Dr Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi, a Symposium on the Theme, Swearing in of New Members, consideration of Standing Committee Reports and Members' Motions.
The Symposium will have presentations from different key role players including the AfCFTA Secretariat, the SADC Secretariat, the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), and the Government of Botswana as the hosts of the 49th Plenary Assembly Virtual Session. The presenters will place emphasis on the domestication process of the AfCFTA, the capacitation of Members, raising of awareness on the key areas, accountability and participation.
The Plenary Assembly, which meets twice a year hosted by one of the member Parliaments on a rotational basis, is the policy-making and deliberative body of the SADC Parliamentary Forum which is constituted by the Speakers and up to five other representatives elected by each national Parliament.
As the apex parliamentary body in the SADC region, the SADC Parliamentary Forum has a critical role to play in ensuring a coordinated and collaborative approach by Parliaments in building the requisite capacity for parliamentarians and relevant parliamentary committees on how they can utilise their law-making and oversight mandate to ensure the effective implementation of the AfCFTA and build a more inclusive and equitable post-Covid SADC region.
Media access: The SADC PF 49th Plenary Assembly Virtual Session is open to the media and journalists who are interested in covering the three-day session must send a request to the SADC-PF Media Office on this email: firstname.lastname@example.org.