The author examines the effectiveness of environmental and developmental rights within the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, in particular their implementation and enforcement in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)and the Republic of South Africa. The SADC Treaty recognises implicitly the afore-mentioned rights, yet their inception in the constitution of the DRC is stil tenuous even though extremely important for sustainable environmental managemenent, development and welfare in the DRC. The South African model provides guidance, but many obstacles remain. The Congolese and South African peoples need to be made aware of their constitutional rights, especially their environmental and development rights, and the institutions and the mechanisms available to enforce them. They need to be empowered to demand justice as a right not as an act of charity.