Original Research

SADC Mediation in Zimbabwe's Global Political Agreement (GPA): A Reflection on Opportunities and Complexities

Modeni M. Sibanda
Africa’s Public Service Delivery & Performance Review | Vol 2, No 2 | a51 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/apsdpr.v2i2.51 | © 2014 Modeni M. Sibanda | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 November 2016 | Published: 01 June 2014

About the author(s)

Modeni M. Sibanda, University of Fort Hare, South Africa

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This article analyses the opportunities and complexities of the SADC mediation in Zimbabwe’s Global Political Agreement (GPA) in facilitating and operationalising theprinciples and values of peace, security, human rights and democracy as set out in Article 4 of the SADC treaty. It attempts to interrogate the extent to which the regional grouping’s mechanisms for enforcing its principles and values have been successful.   The article argues that despite SADC’s noble commitment to promoting the development of democratic institutions and practices, as well as encouraging the observance of universal human rights, peace and security, the resolution of the Zimbabwe crisis shows that, in practice, the operationalisation of SADC protocol principles and values have been a sorry saga of delays, secrecy, purported agreements and nothing concrete coming out of it.  Using the Zimbabwe case study, this article further argues that SADC either lacks appropriate power and authority or is reluctant to hold member states accountable.  This seems so, given that as a regional body, it has allowed itself to be utterly inadequate to the task envisioned by the organ in resolving the Zimbabwe crisis. The paper concludes that the sum of all this has had the effect of exposing SADC and it being perceived as a weak regional organisation.


SADC Mediation; Regional Integration; Security Community; Accountability; Trust; Monitoring and Evaluation; Zimbabwe


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