Mmegi Online :: UB Scholar Doubts RISDP Success
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Last Updated
Friday 19 October 2018, 15:27 pm.
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UB Scholar Doubts RISDP Success

The SADC Regional Indicative Strategic Development Programme (RISDP)might never succeed because its assumptions are too unrealistic, Professor Balefi Tsie of the University of Botswana (UB) has said.
By Staff Writer Sun 21 Oct 2018, 09:13 am (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: UB Scholar Doubts RISDP Success








Speaking at a one-day seminar on 'regional integration and the role of member-states' organised by the French embassy in Botswana and the UB Centre for Strategic Studies(CSS) said last week, Tsie said the models proposed to attain the RISDP goals cannot work.

He said the region is still trailing behind in priority intervention areas identified by the RISPD. The areas are poverty eradication,combating HIV/AIDS, gender equality and development, environmental protection and sustainable development.

Tsie blamed SADC for relying too much on international donors since its establishment,saying it cannot implement a development programme based on donations.He urged SADC to find other ways to get income for development and sustainability. He stated that RISDP might not achieve anything significantly different from what the region already has.

However, he hailed SADC for its success in other areas like forging a sense of regional identity, rehabilitation of infrastructure and implementation of projects.

At the seminar, former Botswana Defence Force (BDF) commander Lt-Gen Matshwenyego Fisher presented a paper on SADC security architecture Fisher who is now a lecturer at Stellenbosch University in South Africa said SADC states, should continue working together to ensure regional security. He said this could only be achieved through good national state security.

Fisher said if state security is under constant threat, human security is compromised and that can make it difficult to achieve regional security. He said SADC states can safely share information on security and this is essential in preventing conflict in the region."State parties shall individually and collectively through continuous cooperation and assistance maintain and develop their individual and collective self -defense capacity to maintain peace,

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stability and security in the region," he said. He said the region has been doing well in terms of security relations citing the frequent regional military exercises to bring together all SADC brigades to enhance their capacity.

However, Fisher noted that there are still some question marks over the full establishment of the regional security command. He said lack of equipment is hindering the regional security interaction efforts.

He explained that some national armies and security forces have a serious shortage of equipment, therefore they find it difficult to work together in regional exercises.He said inter-operability issues need tobe resolved and a decision should be madeu whether the SADC brigade will have the stand-alone capacity in terms of organisation structure, assets, equipment and logistics.

Another scholar, Professor Jacques Tenier from the French embassy in Gaborone presented a comparative appraisal of regional integration between SADC and the European Union (EU).

In his presentation, he said SADC should borrow a leaf from other successful regional bodies like the EU.

He said SADC should not give up as the RISDP can take long to be implemented because of lack of cooperation and disagreements in particular areas.

The RISDP is a development policy setup by SADC to provide a framework for regional cooperation and deeper integration in southern Africa within the context of the SADC common agenda.

It comprehensively spells out SADC's priority intervention areas and maps out general goals and targets for the next 15years.

Tsie said the formulation of RISPD was necessary because, for a long time after its establishment as a development community,SADC did not have a development policy.ccess

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