The SADC Tribunal: Debunking the myths and its relevance to all in Southern Africa

Patricia Mwanyisa's picture

The Southern African Development Community (SADC) Tribunal is not an institution that is new to most civil society organisations in Southern Africa. A lot of information and misinformation has been circulated regarding this institution. Most of this has focused on the controversy related to Zimbabwe and the jurisdiction of the Tribunal. But what is the SADC Tribunal? What is its relevance to the day-to-day affairs of the peoples and civil society in SADC? Does it still exist? What have organisations done to try to prevent its demise? What else can be done and is being done? Why should civil society organisations, trade unions, individuals and businesses care about preserving the Tribunal? What is the role of organisations, individuals and businesses in this? 

These are some of the questions which the panel of experts will seek to answer in layman and simple terms. The panel will seek to clarify some of the misconceptions surrounding the SADC Tribunal, particularly its legitimacy and the justifications hitherto provided for its suspension and revised mandate. Panellists are experts who have been involved in advocacy around the Tribunal since the controversy began. They will provide information on what has already been done in this area and how organisations and others can work together in continuing the struggle to preserve the Tribunal’s human rights jurisdiction, as well as the importance of continued advocacy for the reinstatement of individual access to the Tribunal. 






Patricia Mwanyisa 




Muluka Miti-Drummond 


Introduction of topics and panellists 


Emilia Siwingwa 

Tanzanian Lawyer 

Contextualising the situation – events leading to the adoption of the revised protocol, including debunking the myths 


Pusetso Morapedi 


Socio-economic and other implications of the revised SADC Tribunal 


Lloyd Kuveya 

International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) 

The struggle so far: National and regional advocacy by Civil Society Organisations 


Daimu Halfani Mtula 

Tanganyika Law Society (TLS) 

TLS Litigation related to preservation of the SADC Tribunal 




Interactive session with audience 


About the panellists: 

Emilia Siwingwa is a lawyer by profession, admitted to practice law in the United Republic of Tanzania as an Advocate of the High Court. She has 7 years’ experience in senior positions within national and regional law societies in East and Southern Africa in matters concerning legal sector reform, rule of law and regional integration; and an additional 5 years’ experience in managing development projects. Through membership and/or committee/board affiliation, Emilia also works closely with the Tanganyika Law 

Pusetso Morapedi is the Governance, Peace and Security Programme Officer at the SADC Council of NGOs based in Gaborone, Botswana. She has studied for a Master degree in Politics and International Relations from at the University of Botswana. Her paper was on security sector governance in Botswana. Her interests are in security sector reform, governance, parliamentary oversight. She has Post Grad diploma in International Studies from Rhodes University. Pusetso believes in active citizenship as a member of the Junior Chamber International (JCI), and working with civil society on issues of accountability, transparency, justice, rule of law is a passion close to her heart. She is committed to promoting democracy, inclusive participation in the dealings of the development. The issues of accessible justice for all are a dream she cherishes and to which she would like to contribute. 

Lloyd Kuveya is a senior legal advisor at the Africa Regional Program of the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) based in Johannesburg. Before joining ICJ he was the regional litigation and advocacy manager at the Southern Africa Litigation Centre in Johannesburg. He obtained his LLB at the University of Zimbabwe in 2005 and went on to do an LLM in Human Rights and Democratization in Africa at the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria in 2006. He has worked as a magistrate and human rights lawyer in Zimbabwe, as well as a researcher for Justice Madala at the Constitutional Court of South Africa. He was in the Executive Committee of the Coalition for an Effective African Court from 2008 to 2012. Lloyd is committed to the promotion and protection of human rights, democracy, good governance and adherence to justice and the rule of law on the African continent. He strongly believes in the use of the law as an advocacy tool to achieve justice, equality and human dignity both at the domestic, regional and international level. 

Daimu Halfani Mtula is a practising Advocate of the High Court of Tanzania and has litigated in constitutional and Human Rights since 2006. He is a member of Access to Justice Committee of Tanganyika Law Society (TLS) and formerly served on the Human Rights Committee for three years. He is also lead counsel to the constitutional petition filed by the TLS against the Attorney General of Tanzania. The petition challenges the decision of the government of Tanzania to participate in the suspension of the SADC Tribunal and the subsequent signing of the new SADC Tribunal Protocol. 




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