Source: Zim, Moza joint defence indaba begins | The Herald October 12, 2016
Leonard Ncube Bulawayo Bureau
THE 9th session of the Zimbabwe-Mozambique Joint Permanent Commission on Defence and Security (JPCDS) has opened amid serious security challenges posed by illegal migrants, wildlife poachers as well as smugglers of precious minerals from the two countries.JPCDS co-chair Mr Martin Rushwaya, who is also the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Defence said, this yesterday while officiating this year’s JPCDS session which started here on Monday and ends on Friday.
“Despite stable security, the influx of irregular migrants particularly those from the Great Lakes Region and the horn of Africa remain a major security challenge for our two countries and the entire sadc region.
“In addition, the smuggling of precious minerals as well as poaching of elephants and rhinos are the major security challenges we face,” said Mr Rushwaya.
He said the JPCDS provides a platform to reflect and deal with these challenges.
“The JPCDS provides a platform for information sharing and the formulation of joint strategies that help us to address the common security challenges that face our two countries. It’s also an opportunity to reflect on the peace and security issues that affect our two republics, the region and Africa as a whole as well as for us to review progress made or lack of it,” Mr Rushwaya said.
The two countries last met for a similar platform last year in Mozambique.
Mr Rushwaya said continuous engagements between security sectors from the two countries at JPCDS level was testimony that the neighbouring countries enjoy cordial relations.
He said Zimbabwe and Mozambique will stand by each other in times of need as has always been the case as history has shown that instability in either of the two affects the other.
Mozambique Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Defence Mr Fernando Farnela Campine said security forces from both countries would continue cooperating on issues of mutual interest.
Zimbabwe Defence Forces Commander General Costantino Chiwenga, who chairs the defence committee, Police Commissioner General Augustine Chihuri, deputy director in the President’s Department and chairperson of the security committee Mr Aaron Nhepera, Department of Immigration principal director Mr Clemence Masango and their Mozambican counterparts are in attendance while Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services Commissioner General Paradzai Zimondi was represented by an official from his department.
The conference continues under closed door sessions ahead of the arrival of respective ministers today and the official opening session tomorrow.