Geingob urges SADC to reduce dependence on development aid

GABORONE: President Hage Geigob has on Monday called on SADC Member states and governments to reduce dependency on official development aid If the region would like to see sustained and broad based economic development.

In his maiden speech during the official opening of the 35th SADC Ordinary Summit in Gaborone, Botswana, Geingob called on the member states to safeguard the region’s economic sovereignty by reducing dependency.

‘We need to reduce our dependency on official development aid, and we must safeguard our economic sovereignty. No matter how meager our financial resources may be, I believe that if we pull together in the spirit of Harambee (pull together), we will achieve our objective of an industrialized and prosperous region,’ said Geingob to a thunderous of applause from the audience.

He also called on the region’s governments to equally work hard to reduce the dependency on traditional sources of revenue and lending.

‘We must diversify our domestic revenue sources, and create well-capitalized local and regional financial institutions to fund our developmental agenda,’ he said.

He indicated that the discrepancies in income both across nations and within nations are on the increase.

The rich seem to be getting richer and the poor are getting poorer, he said, adding that the region is not immune to this trend.

However, he indicated that for the prosperity to be sustainable, it must be shared prosperity.

‘With the Post-2015 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the African Union 2063 Development Agenda, and our own Regional Policies on

Development, the necessary frameworks are in place to take our Region to greater heights,’ he stated further.