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Hon Lovemore Moyo's acceptance speech to the SADC Parliamentary Forum
Movement for Democratic Change
December 07, 2010

Our Host, Hon. Professor Katjavivi, Chief Whip
The outgoing Chairperson, H.R.H Prince Guduza Dlamini,
Fellow Speakers,
Members of the diplomatic Corps,
The Secretary General, Dr. Esau Chiviya,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

I feel humbled by this historic honour bestowed upon me and the parliament of Zimbabwe by the Executive Committee of the SADC Parliamentary Forum. First and foremost, this honour speaks to the Parliament of Zimbabwe's contribution to the inception and institutional growth of the Forum since its inception in 1996. Secondly, this honour, in many ways, signifies the recognition of each constituent national parliament's role in the fulfillment of the Forum's mandate in the past decade and a half. In other words, this moment crowns our individual and collective effort in enhancing the regional integration agenda within the SADC region. We are all victors, and the Forum has come out stronger from this elective process.

As I assume the Chair of the SADC Parliamentary Forum, I do so fully confident of the support that will have from members of the incoming Executive who include in their midst experiences Speakers and Honorable members. Let me take this opportunity to congratulate Hon. Anne Makinda, for her elevation to the post of Speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of Tanzania after the recent successful elections.

Dear colleagues, allow me to salute all the past chairpersons of the SADC parliamentary Forum who have built this institution from its nascent stage into a formidable player that it is today within our regional body politic, the likes of the late Hon. Speaker Mose Tjitendero of Namibia, Speaker N. Motsamai of Lesotho and Hon Speaker Amussa Mwanamwambwa of Zambia among others. I would like to pay special tribute to the outgoing Chairperson, His Royal Highness Prince Guduza Dlamini for his splendid and outstanding stewardship in the past two years. His inspired and profound achievements will remain a reference benchmark for future generations to come.

Dear colleagues, in my tenure I will diligently build on the solid foundation that has been laid down by my predecessors. In this regard, my tenure will be guided by the 3 C's: that is, continuity, consolidation and commitment. From yesterday's deliberations, the wishes of the plenary are very clear, this Executive Committee will pay attention to the urgent need to clarify and tighten the Forum's rules of Procedure and Administration.

In tandem with the Forum's core mandate, I will render utmost attention to such key areas as good governance and democracy, gender equality, inter-parliamentary cooperation, information communication technologies (ICTs)regional economic development and integration, and the promotion of Parliamentary participation and oversight in the fight against HIV and AIDS.

I also want to assure you that I will diligently spearhead the sharing and dissemination of the vision and mission of the Forum at the various regional and international for a such as the Pan- African Parliament (PAP) and Inter Parliamentary Union (IPU). This, I believe, would enhance the standing of the Forum vis-a-vis other players in regional and international affairs including non-state-actors.

Last but not least, I am aware that since its inception in 1996, the SADC Parliamentary Forum has faced challenges in its endeavors to transform into a full-fledged regional parliament. Without delving into reasons for the protracted delay in the realisation of this noble objective, I pledge to re-double the Forum's diplomatic and political efforts to ensure that this long-awaited transformation sees the light of day during my tenure. This will require the requisite aggregate political will at both national and regional levels.

In conclusion, today makes a new era in our endeavor to propel the Forum to greater heights as it spearheads the regional integration project. Indeed, it is an honour to be allowed to serve the SADC Parliamentary Forum at this elevated level.

I thank you

Asante Sana
Moito Obrigado
Rea Leboga

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