Challenging extractivism and taking ownership of our resources for people-centred development’

Kinshasa, 17 August, 2022

We, social movements, and progressive civil society organisations from the SADC Region, having met for our annual SADC People’s Summit from the 16th – 18th of August under the theme ‘Challenging extractivism and reclaiming our resources for people centered development’

Express our collective solidarity with the people and civil organizations of the Democratic Republic of Congo in their quest to reclaim access and control of their natural resources in the face of extreme poverty and inequality, resource driven militarised conflict and unaccountable plunder of natural resources.

Recognise the critical role that SADC leaders can play to address the challenges affecting the people of Southern Africa, in particular: extreme poverty and growing inequality, climate injustice, heavy public indebtedness, militarised conflicts, gender injustice and the continued plunder of the Region’s natural resources through extractivism by Transnational Corporations. These challenges are at the heart of the unattended suffering of the majority of the Region’s people, more especially, women, youth, the disabled, mining affected communities and other vulnerable people.

Understand the unique and historic opportunities for the people of the Region and their leaders to unite behind bold and transformative measures to address pressing challenges affecting the Region. These measures include: basic income grants, universal healthcare, free education and other social protection measures, which in these times of profound economic crises are long overdue.

Raise alarm at the profound impacts of climate change particularly on the lives and livelihoods of the poor and vulnerable people around the Region.

Acknowledge the important measures approved by the Council of Ministers and/or adopted by the Heads of State and Government during the 42nd Summit, including: the Non-State Actors Engagement Framework, costed national plans for implementation of the SADC Regional Strategic Indicative Development Plan; establishment of SADC Parliament, and the reaffirmation of SADC’s principled position of Non-Alignment to conflicts outside of the Region.

Raise serious concern about the difficulties experienced by civil society organisations, human rights defenders, and dissenting voices in expressing their views, holding leaders accountable and accessing fundamental freedoms amidst worsening human rights conditions and shrinking democratic space across the Region.     

Gender Justice And Women Rights

We demand legally binding mechanisms to protect and safeguard the interests of women and children in mining host communities. As well as, measures to curtail the exploitative nature of the mining laws that exist today, and which primarily benefit elite and transnational corporations. Extractive resources must benefit women and youths living in mining host communities. 

We demand that Governments use proceeds from the extractive sector towards Gender responsive Budgets that put Sexual Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) services closer and accessible to the vulnerable and poor particularly young women and girls.

We reiterate the call for governments to allocate adequate resources towards health (particularly, maternal health care to prevent high infant mortality and infections due to childbirth) as per the Abuja Declaration. The Abuja Declaration stipulates that governments must allocate a minimum of 15% of national budgets towards the national budgets. 

We further reiterate our call for Governments in the SADC region to implement the ‘zebra principle’ of equal representation between men and women in decision making processes. 

We urge SADC leaders to consider meaningful actions to facilitate the inclusion of women with disabilities in all decision-making spaces in the SADC region. In addition, we call upon SADC Governments to set aside funds to capacitate women living with disabilities. 

We demand that Governments provide financing for income generating projects to women and girls to curtail prostitution and GBV.


1. We condemn the structural and systemic exclusion of young people the from socio-economic and political processes that shape the trajectory and outcomes of development at the national and regional levels.

2. We call upon SADC leaders to enact Youth Acts of Parliament to strengthen and frame youth inclusion and meaningful participation in social, economic, and political spaces.

3. We urge SADC Governments to invest in the youth by strengthening the institutional, operational and financial capacity of youth-serving bodies at national and regional levels to enable them to deliver on their mandate.

Shrinking Civic Space

1. We share concern with the increasingly shrinking civic space characterized by violations of these rights, harassment of civil society actors, and enactment of repressive laws with unclear, overbearing, overstepping, or outright brutal enforcement parameters by state security agencies.

2. We urge SADC Governments to align legislative frameworks, policy and practice to constitutional provisions that guarantee civic and political rights 

3. We urge the inclusion of Youth Organisations and their leaders in SADC’s Non-State Actors Engagement mechanisms as well as in structures tasked with the prevention, management and resolution of conflicts.

4. We condemn the increased cases of state-sponsored harassment and abuse targeting Students Leaders and young Human Rights Defenders 

On Early Childhood Development (ECD)

1. We call for the inclusion of Early Childhood Development in the Education and Training Protocol as it is only mentioned without any detail in the current Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan (RISDP). 

2. We urge SADC Governments to establish structures and systems for ECD to thrive especially for providing leadership, infrastructure and training of teachers for this level. 

3. We call upon SADC leaders to allocate no less than 5% of national budgets to ECD and Increase access to quality inclusive universal ECD by 2030 as expected in Sustainable Development Goal Number 4 Target 2 (SDG4.2)

Democracy Human Rights And Governance

1. We call for a SADC resolution to compel SADC to deploy missions to monitor elections on a continuous basis, as well as missions to address escalating human rights situations in regional hotspots such as Eswatini, Lesotho, DRC, Zimbabwe, and South Africa, with monitoring missions to include civil society, and allow for real time intervention. 

2. We urge SADC leaders to strengthen regional dispute resolution mechanisms, to address electoral disputes, 

3. We reiterate our call for the re-establishment of the SADC tribunal to address human rights violations.

4. We call upon SADC to do more to facilitate the inclusion of vulnerable and traditionally marginalised groups, such as women, youth, PWDs, LGBTQI, and communities affected by extractivism in regional decision-making processes. 

5. We reiterate our call for the demilitarisation of the Region and use of dialogue and engagement to resolve ongoing militarised conflicts in Cabo Delgado and Eastern DRC. 

6. We condemn the growing instances of planned xenophobic violence particularly in South Africa and urge SADC to strengthen its conflict resolution mechanisms and take practical measures to promote freedom of movement within the region, and respect for the dignity of immigrants throughout SADC.

Kingdom of Eswatini 

1. We demand the public release of the SADC Fact Finding Mission Reports to the Kingdom of Eswatini.

2. We urge SADC to call for an all-inclusive National Dialogue facilitated by a respectable neutral facilitator, with a special envoy authorised to engage with the King, that will include political parties as well as the government and civil society to find a long-lasting solution to the political crisis in Eswatini

3. We demand the immediate release of all political prisoners and credible guarantees for the safe return of all political exiles 

4. We urge SADC leaders to facilitate the drafting of a new democratic constitution drafted with the participation of all citizens. 

5. We call upon King Mswati iii to lift all restrictions and laws that impede on the freedom of the media, civil society and dissenting voices. 

Democratic Republic of Congo 

1. We demand SADC leaders to stand in solidarity in condemning Rwandan military intervention in Eastern DRC.

2. We call for the establishment of a Regional Treaty to regulate peace missions and military interventions in response to conflict.

3. We urge SADC leaders to rally behind ongoing efforts to establish a binding Treaty to dismantle corporate power as a way to address the excessive power of foreign multinational companies operating in the DRC.

4. We call for a SADC led peace process in the Eastern DRC to be guided by local communities, and oriented towards addressing the root causes of the conflict and to ensure long term stability  

5. We demand robust efforts to address xenophobia and the ill-treatment of DRC nationals and other victims of military conflict, climate change and internal displacement in Southern Africa.


1. We call for SADC intervention to resolve the shrinking civic and democratic space, political violence and proposed restrictive legislation in Zimbabwe and the region.

2. We encourage the government of Zimbabwe to reverse the introduction into law of the repressive PVO Amendment Bill which threatens CSO existence and voices  

3. We urge SADC to deploy an observer mission to Zimbabwe to assess and monitor the human rights situation before the 2023 harmonised elections.

4. We demand the re-establishment of the SADC tribunal   

Economic Justice And Inequality

Economic Justice

1. We acknowledge the adoption of the Model Law on Public Financial Management by the SADC Parliamentary Forum and urge Member States to adopt similar laws at national level to ensure the sound and accountable use of public resources.

2. Urge the consideration of urgent and decisive regional measures to dismantle the undue influence of transnational corporations; private, bilateral and multilateral creditors; and armed groups in the social, economic and political affairs of the Region,

3. We call on SADC countries to maintain and intensify their position towards a strong binding treaty to hold transnational corporations to account and to include the right of communities and workers to Say No to extractivism and other business developments that undermine the power of the people to the right to decide on their economic and social paradigm and path.

Trade Justice

1. We call upon SADC leaders to dismantle non- tariff barriers and fast-track the implementation of the SADC Simplified Trade Regime.

2. We urge SADC leaders to facilitate the inclusion of informal sector, smallholder farmers and Cross-Border Traders (SACBTA) in the implementation of regional and Pan African trade agreements.

Extreme Inequality

1. We urge SADC leaders to address extreme inequality in the Region through just and equitable recovery measures as well as social protection mechanisms targeting women, the youth, low wage workers and other vulnerable groups in the region.

2. We demand the abandonment of unfair austerity programmes, retrogressive taxation measures and the criminalisation of informal trade, mindful of their disproportionate impacts on already poor and vulnerable groups.

3. We encourage SADC leaders to introduce a Wealth Tax as a redistributive mechanism to generate resources to fund much needed investments in health, education and social service delivery


1. We demand SADC leaders to develop a comprehensive regional debt sustainability plan to wean the Region off debt fuelled economic growth at the expense of the masses.

2. We reiterate our call for Debt Cancellation now as a matter of justice. 

3. We urge the South African government as a member of the G20 to push for legally binding measures to compel Private Creditors to participate in the already limited and inadequate debt restructuring measures such as the G20’s Common Framework for Debt Treatments 

4. We further urge SADC leaders to collectively amplify the development of a global sovereign debt restructuring mechanism. 

5. We urge SADC to invest in the strengthening of Parliamentary accountability, monitoring and oversight in debt contraction and repayment processes.

Natural Resource Governance And Climate Justice  

1. We urge SADC to strengthen regional cooperation in determining the Region’s resource value, advance regional integration and competitively negotiate through collective bargaining to maximise benefits for its people and prospects for industrialisation 

2. We call upon SADC to finalise the review of the protocol on mining, to ensure that it reflects on the African mining vision and harmonise and implement its policies especially those on Artisanal and Small-Scale Mining

3. We demand urgent and decisive measures to curb Illicit financial flows, manage its resources transparently and build a SADC Development bank that takes full advantage of its critical minerals to advance a people centred development and financing its own just energy transition 

Climate Justice

1. We urge SADC leaders to commit to engendered, rights focused and people centered actions to help poor and vulnerable groups in the Region to address climate adaptation challenges and increasing losses and damages.

2. We call upon SADC leaders to create a regional fund to increase the Region’s capacity to move towards a just and inclusive energy transition with a priority focus on increasing access to cheaper decentralised renewable energy, reducing household energy poverty and powering key economic sectors.

3. We urge SADC leaders to increase support and financing towards locally led adaptation processes and disaster risk reduction mainstreaming targeting vulnerable groups such as smallholder farmers, pastoralists, fishing communities and others.   

4. We call upon SADC leaders to collectively engage global leaders during the upcoming COP 27 Summit in Egypt for increased loss and damaging finance 

Food Security and Agro-ecology

1. We demand urgent, gender just and equitable measures to address acute food insecurity and high cost of living crisis affecting millions of people in the SADC Region

2. We call upon SADC leaders to fulfil the Malabo Declaration commitments, and progressively allocate budgets to agriculture that efficiently and effectively reach the Malabo Declaration target of at least 10% of national budgets in order to sustain the desired annual agricultural GDP growth of at least 6%

3. We demand the implementation in all SADC countries of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Peasants and Other People Working in Rural Areas (UNDROP) to protect the human rights, increase voice, and strengthen access and control of peasants and rural workers in food systems and natural resource governance. 

4. We call upon all SADC governments to fulfil the Malabo Declaration commitments, and progressively allocate budgets to agriculture that efficiently and effectively reach the Malabo Declaration target of at least 10% of national budgets in order to sustain the desired annual agricultural GDP growth of at least 6%.

Adopted by the SADC People’s Summit, Kinshasa19/08/22.