Peace and security challenges under spotlight

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Ntsiepe Masoetsa

Scholars from all Southern African countries were brought together at the University of the Free State (UFS) in Bloemfontein to discuss peace and security issues in the region. Hussein Solomon, a senior professor in the department of political studies, says peace and security challeges are experienced in the region. According to him, almost five million people have already been killed in the Congo. The Zimbabwe situation is also not looking good and Lesotho, Angola and Malawi have peace and security challenges of their own. "What we are trying to do is to analyse the problems and come up with possible solutions to try and prevent conflict," says Solomon.

He praises the South African security forces for recently arresting 19 people suspected of intending to overthrow the government of the Congo. "I think it’s good because we do not want our country to be used as a place to topple governments of other countries," he explains. The country’s security was not threatened as these suspects were only in training. Solomon cautioned it is necessary to ensure that South Africa’s borders are completely secured to prevent people with evil intentions from entering. Movement of foreign aliens, drugs and stolen property should also not be allowed between countries’ borders. "I think we need more resources and we need to have sophisticated technology in terms of the equipment we have," says Solomon.