The main objectives of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) are to achieve economic development and growth, peace and security, to alleviate poverty, to enhance the standard and quality of life of the peoples of Southern Africa, and to support the socially disadvantaged through regional integration. This mandate enables the platform to ensure that states within the region are provided with regional peace and security and an integrated economy through regional joint planning and development. It also enables SADC to address issues of deteriorating human rights situations, including but not limited to widespread rights violations, breaches to the rule of law and political repression, such as the current situation in Zimbabwe. 

It is in terms of this mandate that Civic Society Organisations (CSOs) in Zimbabwe have developed this position paper to highlight the Zimbabwean situation and to make key recommendations to the SADC platform at the 42nd Ordinary SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government.