The SADC Chair, Republic of Namibia becomes the 7th Member State to sign the Charter establishing the SADC Monitoring Control and Surveillance Coordination Centre (MCSCC)
The Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources of the Republic of Namibia, Honourable Bernard Esau, on 20th March 2019 in Windhoek, Namibia, signed the Charter establishing the SADC Regional Fisheries Monitoring Control Surveillance Coordination Centre (MCSCC) in Maputo, Mozambique.
This Charter for establishing the MCSCC was approved by the SADC Council of Ministers at their meeting held in August 2017 in Pretoria, South Africa. The objective of this Charter is to provide a legal framework for the establishment and operationalisation of an institution that will coordinate measures relating to fisheries monitoring control and surveillance (MCS) in the SADC region.
Honourable Esau highlighted the important role that fisheries play in the livelihoods of the Namibian people and more so in the SADC region as a whole. He indicated that fisheries resources in the region are under tremendous pressure, especially from illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. Minister recalled that the SADC Ministers responsible for Fisheries had made a commitment in 2008 to strengthen regional cooperation in the fight against the scourge of IUU fishing. The Minister outlined that the region has made advances in implementing this commitment by enhancing regional cooperation, especially in establishing the MCSCC, and encouraged other Ministers of Fisheries from the region to commit further to this cooperation through signing of the Charter.
The Minister further highlighted that “This Charter contains 26 Articles and the realization of the MCSCC will undoubtedly serve to promote regional cooperation, information sharing and cost-effective coordination and shared use of MCS assets to eliminate IUU fishing in the SADC Region. In this regard and also that Namibia is Chairperson of SADC, as Minister of Fisheries and Marine Resources of the Republic of Namibia, I have the honour to sign the MCSCC Charter today”. Namibia became the 7th State Party to the Charter establishing MCSCC, joining Eswatini, Lesotho, Mozambique, South Africa, United Republic of Tanzania and Zambia. At least two thirds of the SADC Member States are required to sign the Charter for it to enter into force, and the Honourable Minister Esau encouraged the SADC Secretariat to continuously engage Member States which have not yet signed the Charter to do so, to enable the region to realize the commitment to fight IUU fishing through establishment of the MCSCC.