Former cabinet minister and ZANU-PF Politburo member Patrick A. Chinamasa and Ambassador Andrew H. Mtetwa have been appointed to the SADC Panel of Elders and Mediation Reference Group respectively.
In a statement released Friday last week, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade said the appointments were made following the approval by the 41st Ordinary Summit of SADC Heads of State and Government held in Lilongwe, Malawi in August 2021.
“The Panel of Elders and Mediation Reference Group are part of the SADC Mediation and Conflicts Prevention and Preventative Diplomacy structure that was established by the SADC Heads of State and Government in August 2014.
“The structure is aimed at strengthening SADC’s mediation capacities and timeously pre-empty violent conflict,” said the ministry.
Chinamasa held various portfolios in government since independence in 1980 where he rose to become the first black Attorney General, before being appointed Cabinet Minister, holding the portfolios of Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs and Finance and Economic Development.
“He will be joining four other eminent personalities that include former Heads of State and Government and former Government Ministries from other SADC countries on the SADC Panel of Elders.
“His appointment is for a four-year term until August 2025,” said the ministry.
Ambassador Mtetwa is a Senior Lecturer at the Zimbabwe National Defence University. He is a former Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and former Ambassador of Zimbabwe to Belgium, Ethiopia, South Africa and Zambia.
“He will serve on the Mediation Reference Group with eight other former ambassadors and high-level officials from the SADC region.
“He will also serve for a term of four years ending in August 2025,” said the ministry.