VP roots for use of international law in protecting natural resources

22Oct 2019
Aisia Rweyemamu
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
VP roots for use of international law in protecting natural resources

VICE President Samia Suluhu Hassan has tasked the African Legal Consultative Organization (AALCO) to protect the interest of developing nations through a fair legal mechanism in international law.

Samia, who represented President John Magufuli at the opening of the 58th annual session of the organisation in Dar es Salaam yesterday, underscored the need for protecting Africa’s natural resources in civil war conditions mainly triggered by the interest of foreign powers to exploit those resources.

The five-day meeting is scheduled to discuss various international issues including legal challenges facing member states and suggest ways to address them to ensure world peace, security and stability for economic, political and social development.

“It is upon us to stand firm and protect our natural resources through our reputable organization. We must strive to ensure establishment of regional and global institutions founded on fairness and respect for national sovereignty to protect our interests,” the VP asserted.

She insisted on African countries standing together and consolidating solidarity to achieve their development goals. AALCO member states must uphold the spirit of cooperation and engagement for application of international law in both Asia and Africa.

The VP noted that it is through cooperation that African and Asian countries will be able to develop positive application of international law especially in areas like trade, investment and regional security.

She said Tanzania has always lived in peace with its neighbors and is still championing peace in the Great Lakes region, having peace keeping forces in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Darfur in Sudan and farther afield in UN contingents in Lebanon.

Tanzania has continued to be the home to many refugees, which shows the country’s commitment to international humanitarian law and human rights observation, she affirmed.

“We strongly believe that where there is rule of law there is stability and where there is stability there is growth and development,” the VP noted, urging member states to work hard in building peace.

VP Samia said Tanzania has undertaken various initiatives in ratifying international treaties against organized crimes such as human trafficking and money laundering.

The country has engaged in a serious war of combating corruption and economic sabotage, where well-established legal instruments are in great need.

Samia used the meeting to call upon states which have imposed sanctions against Zimbabwe to lift them, saying Zimbabwe is a sovereign state with rights to determine and exercise state power and safeguard the  freedom of its people.

Since its establishment, AALCO has provided an important platform to promote and advance common positions and bringing about change in the international sphere for the benefit of both regions.

AALCO is an inter-governmental organization formed in 1956, initially to serve as an advisory board to member states on matters of international law.