SADC urges poverty eradication in the region

By Sharon Kavhu

SADC has urged member states to have determined efforts and necessary engagements with all actors to end poverty in the region as the world commemorates International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.

In a statement on October 17, the day when the event is celebrated annually, the SADC Secretariat said no one should be left behind on the agenda of eradicating poverty, particularly in the region.

“As we move forward with the implementation of the Revised SADC Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP) 2015-2020, which is the SADC development blue print, alongside the African Union Agenda 2063 and the United Nations Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, attention should be paid to the importance of ‘Leaving No One Behind’,” the statement said.

“Member States need to pay special attention to the voices of the most marginalized segments of society, including women, the youths and people living with disabilities. They should be at the table when discussing development issues that affect them.”

The Secretariat called for the private sectors to embrace the ideals contained in the SADC Industrialisation Strategy and Roadmap 2015-2063 to assist the national governments to eradicate poverty.

“It is worrisome that half of the SADC population lives below poverty line, owing to, among other things, high levels of unemployment and underemployment in the region.

“We therefore call for the promotion of regular and effective participation of the private sector, civil society and other partners such as the academia and media in the development process,” adds the statement.

The SADC Secretariat said its core policies and programmes is to end poverty through deeper regional integration and sustainable economic growth and development.

The organisation acknowledges that since the early 1990s, ending poverty and reducing inequalities have been at the core of governments, especially in developing countries.

“In September 2015, United Nations Member States adopted a landmark and ambitious global Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development with 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) whose overarching goal is to end poverty in all its forms, everywhere by the year 2030 through strategies that guarantee the fulfillment of all human rights and ensure no one is left behind,” it said.

This year’s World International Day for the Eradication of Poverty was held under the theme: ‘Answering the call of October 17 to end poverty – A path toward peaceful and inclusive societies’.

According to the United Nations (UN), the theme serves to remind the world about the importance of the values of dignity, solidarity and voice underscored in the “Call to Action” to fight and end poverty everywhere.

The UN adds that the “Call to Action” recognises the knowledge and courage of families living in poverty throughout the world, the importance of reaching out to the poorest and building an alliance with citizens from all backgrounds to end poverty.

“This year marks the 25th anniversary of the declaration by the General Assembly, in its resolution 47/196 of 22 December 1992, of 17 October as the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty,” reads the UN concept note for this year’s theme.

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