The Malawi government has agreed to support efforts by SADC to help restore peace and security in Lesotho where the simmering political and military tension threatens to reach a boiling point.
The decision by Lilongwe follows Vice President Saulos Chilima’s attendance of the SADC Double Troika Plus Two Summit on Monday in Pretoria, South Africa.
SADC member states urged leaders of the Coalition Government in Lesotho to uphold their commitments towards the restoration of constitutional normalcy in the kingdom.
The summit also persuaded political leaders into agreeing to speed up the 2017 elections to a date to be agreed upon between the leaders and other political stakeholders.
Chilima, who was delegated by President Peter Mutharika to attend the summit, said Malawi has a standing commitment to deploy military and police personnel to any troubled country in the region whenever called upon.
“We will contribute a three observer mission to show that we are ready to play a role to achieving regional peace and also as a responsible member of the summit troika,” said Chilima .
Chilima said that considering the economic situation that Malawi was in at the present, ‘’we will definitely limit the number of the team in view of the fact that SADC member states might be required to fund their own personnel.’’
The crisis in Lesotho was sparked by the suspension of parliament in June, 2014 by Prime Minister Thomas Thabane allegedly in fear of a no confidence vote by the other parties, and the Prime Minister’s dismissal of Army Commander Lt. General Tlali Kamoli but who refused to step down.
The summit also discussed the need to fast track the disarmament and demobilisation of Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda (FDLR).