Burundi, Comoros’ SADC membership bids to dominate Swaziland summit
Burundi and the Comoros Islands' application to join SADC is expected to dominate the extraordinary summit of SADC Heads of State and Government in Swaziland on Saturday.
Namibian political analyst, Andrew Niikondo predicts that the possibility is high for both countries to be admitted into the regional bloc.
SADC assessment teams have already visited both Burundi and Comoros and handed over the report to SADC'S organ on politics, defence and security for discussions.
Most member states have in the meantime refrained from publicly supporting or rejecting the applications.
Niikondo argue that while the membership request of Comoros may be a free pass, Burundi's is likely to be attached with conditions.
The tiny nation in Africa’s Great Lakes region was plunged into a political crisis after President Pierre Nkurunziza insisted on a third term and has since suffered isolation by neighbours such as Rwanda and Uganda.
‘’So this is creating fear for Burundi as a small nation on its own. And therefore they feel if we become part of SADC it is good for our safety and it’s not just to join and take things for granted that it wants to join, there are a lot of considerations. SADC is known for protecting countries like DRC so Burundi wants that too.
‘’It’s within SADC’s jurisdiction to say no and give them grace period to address issues internally and the re-apply,” said Niikondo.
Burundi already enjoys good ties with SADC member countries such as South Africa, Angola and Namibia.