Elias Mpedi Magosi has been sworn in as the seventh executive secretary of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) at the 41st SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government, held in Lilongwe, Malawi.
The Batswana takes over from Tanzania’s Stergomena Lawrence Tax, who led the secretariat as the first female for two consecutive terms from 2013 until 2021.
With an impeccable record in coaching, reporting as well as strong skills in resourcing, performance tracking and management, Magosi holds a Masters of Organisation Development from Bowling Green State University in the USA.
He has a strong background in restructuring, organisational redesign, planning and budgeting, and project management. He possesses exceptional skills in communication, facilitation, team development and management, strategic thinking, negotiation, advocacy and high-level advisory.
Magosi has over 28 years of experience in large-scale performance and process improvement, strategic management, human resource management and change management in public, private and parastatal sector organisations.
From April 2021 to the time of his appointment as executive secretary, Magosi served as acting ambassador-at-large under the ministry of international affairs and cooperation of Botswana.
From Feb 2020 to April 2021, Magosi was the permanent secretary to the president in the office of the president, Botswana.
Tax was appointed by the SADC Summit of Heads of State and Government during its 33rd meeting in Lilongwe in 2013, and her tenure was extended for a second term on 20 August 2017 during the 37th SADC Summit.
“My journey as the SADC executive secretary began on 18 August 2013 when I was appointed and sworn-in in this very city of Lilongwe in the warm heart of Africa. Having completed my tenure, God saw it fit that it be in this same city that my tenure ends, and I hand it over to my successor. I am grateful to the Almighty that it started well, and it is ending well here,” she said.
Tax added: “SADC citizens must preserve SADC values, and the long and inspiring history of SADC,” she said.
She added a nation or a region “that does not premise its future on its values and history journeys on a bumpy road”.
She expressed satisfaction with the progress made in empowering women – both economically and in leadership positions in the region, and called for sustained and accelerated progress in women empowerment, saying there is still ground to be covered.
Tax stated: “SADC has several female leaders in various positions, including a female President in SADC, Samia Suluhu Hassan of Tanzania, who has demonstrated beyond any doubt that women are capable of steering nations with outstanding and exemplary leadership, and wisdom.”