President pledges to boost Zim, SA ties

Source: President pledges to boost Zim, SA ties | The Herald

President pledges to boost Zim, SA ties
President Mnangagwa receives the first batch of 5 625 tonnes of maize-meal donated by South Africa towards Cyclone Idai victims from SA’s International Relations and Cooperation Minister Grace Naledi Pandor, while Vice President Constantino Chiwenga and Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Fredrick Shava (far right) look on at State House in Harare yesterday. — Picture: Tawanda Mudimu

Herald Reporter

Zimbabwe wants to join South Africa in the implementation of robust and responsive policies to accelerate the modernisation and industrialisation agenda beneficial to both countries, President Mnangagwa said yesterday when receiving a gift of maize meal for those affected by Cyclone Idai.

The 272 tonnes of maize meal, out of 5 625 tonnes worth R50 million given by South Africa, were handed over to President Mnangagwa by South Africa’s Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Dr Grace Naledi Pandor. 

South Africa is covering the costs of delivery.

“My Government stands ready to deepen the fraternal relations between our two countries and to continue working with South Africa as we implement robust and responsive policies to accelerate modernisation, industrialisation and sustainable socio economic development, for the mutual benefit of our people.

“Greater collaboration is indeed critical specifically with regards to mitigating the impact of climate change and building resilience in our two countries and within Sadc region,” said President Mnangagwa.

President Mnangagwa thanked  South Africa saying the gift coincided with the commemoration of Africa Day.

“We are pleased to be receiving this donation especially today on May 25, Africa Day, when the whole continent is celebrating the successes of our collective fight against colonialism and apartheid.

“We remain emboldened to realise a more prosperous and peaceful Africa as envisioned by our Founding Fathers and Agenda 2063,” said President Mnangagwa.

“As I receive this donation, it is worth highlighting that the distribution plan is in place to ensure that the donation quickly reaches the intended beneficiaries.”

He described South Africa as a strategic neighbour and friend.

“Zimbabwe remains thankful for other forms of support that the Government of the Republic of South Africa availed in 2019 during the response and rehabilitation phases of Cyclone Idai disaster, namely search and rescue and setting up of bailey bridges to enhance access to our vulnerable communities in Chimanimani district.

Dr Pandor said the donation came at a symbolic time during the commemoration of Africa Day. 

“The African Union entrenches the principle of solidarity and unity among African countries from its inception,” she said.

This year’s theme; “Arts, Culture And Heritage: Levers for Building the Africa We Want,” resonated well with the bilateral relations between South Africa and Zimbabwe, which has a long held tradition of people to people cooperation.

“We are of course same people with a shared history, culture, language and heritage. The project which we are embarking today is solely aimed at enhancing cooperation among our people within the culture which all of us hold high, that of ubuntu.”

She said Zimbabwe and South Africa elevated their bilateral relations from a joint commission for cooperation to a bi-national commission chaired at Presidential level and that illustrated the value South Africa attached to Zimbabwe as an ally and partner.

“It is in this spirit of further enhancing of very strong our cordial relations that when our fellow sister neighbour is in need we have to respond,” she said.

Vice President Constantino Chiwenga hailed South Africa for its continued support from the time Zimbabwe was struck with Cyclone Idai. The event was attended by Cabinet Ministers and senior Government officials.