On 26 October 2022, ACCORD hosted the Southern African Development Community (SADC) in Durban. The purpose of this meeting was to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) towards greater cooperation. This MoU succeeds the previous MoU signed in April 2015 as SADC and ACCORD have a longstanding and successful collaboration. ACCORD has provided support to SADC through programmes for capacity building, research, and policy development. Present in the meeting was Dr Jorge C. Cardoso, representing the SADC Secretariat, and Mr Kitenge Tunda. ACCORD was represented by the Founder and Executive Director, Dr Vasu Gounden; General Managers, Senzo Ngubane and Karishma Rajoo; and Programmes Coordinator, Marisha Ramdeen.
In his welcoming and opening remarks, Dr Gounden expressed his great appreciation of the partnership with ACCORD and looked forward to its renewal with SADC. Dr Cardoso presented a review of the current MoU and assessed best practices and lessons learned. He emphasised the instrumental role of the SADC Secretariat in providing expertise and recommendations to member states on mediation, solving conflicts, and capacity building.
The meeting further identified key areas of support that included capacity building as well as institutional and operational strengthening for effective conflict prevention approaches. ACCORD will continue its partnership with SADC and contribution towards conflict mediation and peace in the region.