The Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) bloc in Nigeria on Thursday said the action taken so far by both the African Union (AU) and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on the political impasse brought about by the military coup d’etat in Niger Republic are in order.
The SADC in Nigeria made up of Zimbabwe, Zambia, Botswana, DR Congo, South Africa, Angola, Tanzania and Namibia threw its weight behind the actions taken so far by the continental body and the West African subregional bloc to force the military junta led by General Abdourahamane Tchiani to hand over power back to President Mohamed Bazoum.
Speaking with journalists at Hope of Survival Ophanage Home, Abuja where the SADC donated food items to orphans as part of activities to mark the organisation’s anniversary, the High Commissioner of Namibia to Nigeria and the Dean of the SADC, H.E. Humphrey Geiseb, said the Southern Africa is part of the African Union and definitely concerned about the situations of coups as expressed by ECOWAS which is a regional body just like the Southern Africa Development Community, and equally by the African Union.
He said: “So, we are fully behind the statements and positions of ECOWAS and the African Union.”
Geiseb, while noting that Southern African region is mostly peaceful, as “we hold regular elections and democracy is very strong in our region,” said there is need for continuity of democracy everywhere on the continent.
Geiseb who led other envoys from SADC in Nigeria to the donation of the food items put at over N3 million, explained that the Southern Africa region is part of the African Union, stressing that whatever happens in other regions of the African continent indirectly affects SADC.
Speaking about the decision to visit the orphanage, he said the SADC wanted to provide succour to the orphans and also demonstrate the enduring friendship between the Southern African countries and the government and people of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
He said: “We came to celebrate with the orphanage here by making official donations.
“This is our way of honoring the Southern Africa Development Community as well as the Federal Government of Nigeria which has supported strongly the liberation struggle of Southern Africa.
“Today, our sub-continent is free and independent. Many of our countries can recall that the Federal Republic of Nigeria has strongly supported us during the dark days of colonialism.”
While commending the SADC for the gesture, Mrs. Ruth Ibrahim, proprietress of the orphanage home, said the gifts would go a long way in helping her to feed the 75 children under the care of the home.
She, however, called for assistance in paying the school fees of the children in the orphanage home, stressing that it had been difficult for the management to cope with the high cost of education in the country.