VICTORIA, Mahé, August 31, 2010/African Press Organization (APO)
The former President of the Republic of Seychelles, Sir James R. Mancham, was elected to the COMESA Committee of Elders for the COMESA Region, following his nomination by the Government of Seychelles. His election took place at the 10th Meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), which took place from the 28th to the 29th August 2010 in Ezulwini, Swaziland. The meeting elected a total of four new members to the Committee.
The Committee of Elders was established during the 9th meeting of the COMESA Ministers of Foreign Affairs, in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe in 2009 with the election of five elders to serve a period of four years on the COMESA programme for Peace and Security. The elders advise the COMESA Council on peace security issues and serve as peace envoys. The functions of the elders will include facilitating fact finding missions, shuttle diplomacy and leading election observer missions to member states. The elders will thus support the programme with preventive diplomacy through their good offices. With the elections held in Swaziland, the total number of elders now stands at nine.
The already serving elders include Mrs Immaculée Nahayo of Burundi Ambassador Soad A. Shalaby of the Arab Republic of Egypt, Ambassador Bethuel A. Kiplagat of the Republic of Kenya, Ambassador Anund Priyay Neewor of Mauritius, Mr Atem Garang Deng Deduek of the Republic of Sudan.
The newly elected members are Sir James Mancham of the Republic of Seychelles, Ms Betty Oyella Bigombe of the Republic of Uganda, Ambassador Simbi Veke Mubako of the Republic of Zimbabwe and Ambassador Berhane Ghebray of Ethiopia.
It should be noted that only eminent personalities with distinguished record in Peace and Security may be eligible for membership of the Committee of Elders. The newly elected Elders will be officially appointed by King Mswati III of the Kingdom of Swaziland at the Summit, in his capacity as Chair of the COMESA Authority.
“The election of former President Mancham is testimony of the active role that Seychelles is playing in COMESA and we are proud to have a representative serving on this eminent Committee,” Mr Jean-Paul Adam, Minister for Foreign Affairs has stated.
The Minister was leading the Seychelles delegation at the 10th edition of the meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs which is part of the Policy Organs Meeting of COMESA which will culminate in the COMESA Summit on the 31st August -1st September 2010 in Ezulwini, Swaziland.
SOURCE: Republic of Seychelles – Ministry of Foreign Affairs