New organs launched to advance SA foreign policyby SAVIOUS KWINIKA
JOHANNESBURG, (CAJ News) – THE Department of International Relations and Cooperation has launched two foreign policy organs envisaged to enhance South Africa’s foreign policy.
The South African Council on International Relations (SACOIR) and the Association of Former Ambassadors, High Commissioners and Chief Representatives have been launched in Pretoria.
Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, said the launch gave practical effect to Zuma’s message in the State of the Nation Address in February when he called for increased engagements among business, labour and other social partners.
“Thus, from the perspective that foreign policy is an extension of our domestic policy, we strongly believe that the creation of SACOIR will go a long way in offering practical opportunities for cooperation with civil society in tackling the triple challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment identified as foreign policy priorities by Chapter 7 of the National Development Plan (NDP),” she said.
The purpose of the new association will be to create a platform for former Ambassadors, High Commissioners and Chief Representatives to lend their extensive experience and institutional memory on international relations and diplomacy towards the development and execution of our foreign policy.
The former Heads of Mission will stimulate discussions on international relations and diplomacy so as to advance public understanding of, and support for, our country’s key foreign policy objectives and national interests.
The association will promote the exchange of policy views and information which will encourage greater understanding of global, regional and bilateral trends as well as provide inputs for government policy formulation.
The members of SACOIR have been named as Prof. Maxi Schoeman, Prof. Anthoni Van Nieuwkerk, Dr Siphamandla Zondi, Prof. Shamil Jeppie; Prof. Sekgothe Mokgoatsana and Prof. Peter Vale (Academia).
Others are Nonhlanhla Mjoli-Mncube, Dr Thandi Cynthia Ndlovu, Chichi Maponya, Danisa Baloyi and Billy Masetlha (Business).
Dr Somadoda Fikeni, Jimmy Gotyana, Tshepo Mashiane, Griffiths Mandlenkosi Memela, Kenny Morolong, Molly Dhlamini, Aziz Pahad, Maomela Motau, Kuseni Dlamini and Vasu Gounden represent Civil Society.
“I would like to welcome both SACOIR and the Association to the DIRCO family and wish you all the best with the task ahead as we will together be unpacking and repackaging South Africa’s foreign policy to attain our vision of a better life for all,” Nkoana-Mashabane.
– CAJ News
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