11.8.2020 : 11:49 : +0200

General Information | Point of Contact | PoA initiatives & activites | Instruments & documents | Members


Southern African Development Community (SADC)


Gaborone, Botswana

Web site

Short description

SADC’s mission is ‘to promote sustainable and equitable economic growth and socioeconomic development through efficient productive systems, deeper co-operation and integration, good governance, and durable peace and security’.


Member states provide equal financial contributions to SADC that are meant to cover the organization’s administrative arrangements; however, there are limitations due to inadequate resources and staffing provided by members. SADC is to mobilize resources for SARPCCO, which is an affiliated SADC structure (see SARPCCO entry) responsible for coordinating and implementing SADC’s small arms activities. However, these have been primarily supported and administered by the ISS and other partners.

Nine states formed the Southern African Development Coordination Conference in 1980 with the adoption of the Lusaka Declaration. The nine founding members plus the newly independent Namibia signed the SADC Treaty and Declaration in 1992. The remaining five states joined SADC in the 1990s, with Seychelles leaving in 2004 and rejoining in 2008. As of May 2012, Madagascar remained suspended (which began in 2008).


15 members (all UN member states)

  • Current members*: Angola, Botswana, DRC, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe (Bold: founding member, Grey: suspended member)
  • Former members: None
  • Membership pending: None

Overlapping memberships with other ROs

SADC members represent:

  • 15 of 54 AU members
  • 1 of 3 CEPGL members (the DRC is a CEPGL member)
  • 8 of 19 COMESA members
  • 4 of 11 ICGLR members
  • 3 of 15 RECSA members
  • 15 of 15 SARPCCO members

*Information accurate as of 17 May 2012

PoA Point of Contact

  • Ezekiel Senti
  • Legal Adviser, Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation


PoA-related activities

Agreed in 2001, the SADC Protocol on the Control of Firearms, Ammunition and Other Related Materials entered into force on November 2004. It was the first African regional small arms agreement to become legally binding. The Regional Coordinating Committee was established under the auspices of SARPCCO in 2007. The committee is composed of NFPs and is responsible for implementing the SADC Protocol (see SARPCCO entry). With respect to peace support operations, SADC established the Organ for Politics, Defence and Security in 1996, under which SADC members have undertaken peacekeeping training and other capacity-building initiatives. For instance, SADCPOL is a regional pool of police officers who can be deployed in peace support operations. Member states second officers to SADCPOL for three years. SADCPOL also coordinates with SARPCCO. In 2008 SADC parliamentarians met at a two-day conference to discuss parliamentary oversight of the security sector, focusing in particular on the subject of small arms.

PoA-related programmes and initiatives

PoA-relevant cooperation with other ROs

SADC is a member of the AU-Regions Steering Committee on Small Arms. SADCPOL often coordinates with the APF. It additionally collaborates with RECSA. In 2010 cooperation between SADC and EAC led to shared lessons learned and best practices in the areas of stockpile management and destruction.

Legally binding regional instruments

  • SADC Protocol on the Control of Firearms, Ammunition and Other Related Materials (August 2001)

Other official documents of interest

  • ‘SADC Statement at the Fourth Biennial Meeting of States to the UN Programme of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in All Its Aspects’ (2010)


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