16 August 2017
OPENING OF THE 2017 SADC PEOPLE’S SUMMIT
The 2017 SADC People’s Summit will officially be opened today at 16:00 at Constitutional Hill, Braamfontein, Johannesburg.
This year’s summit will bring together over a thousand delegates from all over the Southern African region to tackle issues affecting civil society in the region.
The Peoples’ Summit, arranged by the Southern African People’s Solidarity Network (SAPSN), is a forum for organisations and social movements to meet parallel to the SADC (Southern African Development Community) Heads-of-State Summit meeting, which is currently taking place in Pretoria.
For the next three days, delegates will deliberate over a host of critical issues affecting the region and given scant regard at the inter-government deliberations.
No doubt the highlight of the People’s Summit will be the 2nd Permanent People’s Tribunal which will be held at the Women’s Jail Atrium from 9am until 5pm on Thursday. The Tribunal is one part of a major global campaign to fight the exploitation of our lands, our eco-systems, our labour and our bodies by big corporates acting together with powerful states. Headed by a panel of experts, the Tribunal will hear testimonies from communities around the region.
Among the testimonies will be against Italian corporation, Parmalat, and how their presence in Zambia has had a detrimental effect on small scale dairy farmers, the worst affected being women.
Mozambican activists will testify how the proposed Mphanda Nkuwa dam will destroy the Zambezi river ecosystem and delta, that is life to millions of people. Others testimonies will be around mining in Tanzania, Malawi and Mozambique; and around Monsanto and farmer input subsidies in the region.
Another highlight of the Summit will be the Migrant People’s Assembly against Xenophobia and for the Free Movement Of Peoples in the Region. This will happen from 2pm until 5pm on Thursday.
Also on Thursday will be the Assembly of the Unemployed which will take place in Constitution Square from 9am until 5pm.
On Friday August 18, representatives from the People’s Summit wRill hand over a communique to the Heads of Summit meeting in Pretoria.
Attached here please find the full programme of the People’s Summit as well as an outline of the cases to be heard at the Permanent People’s Tribunal.
FOR MORE INFORMATION AND TO ARRANGE INTERVIEWS WITH KEY SPOKESPERSONS PLEASE CONTACT RAASHIED GALANT ON 079 525 9866