Thursday, May 24, 2018

Zimbabwe Hails Africa’s Support
25 MAY, 2018 - 01:05
Fidelis Munyoro Senior Reporter

GOVERNMENT has hailed African countries for the support they rendered during the country’s peaceful transition last year that opened a new chapter in the history of Zimbabwe.

Addressing diplomats accredited to Zimbabwe during celebrations to mark 55th Africa Day commemorations in Harare last night, Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Dr Sibusiso Moyo said the day had added significance in that it was the first under the new dispensation.

“Allow me to once again thank you all for the tremendous support that your countries, individually and collectively rendered us during and after the peaceful transition,” said Minister Moyo.

“I would like to especially thank Sadc and the African Union for their apt reading of the events in Zimbabwe as well as their unwavering support.”

Minister Moyo noted that after the peaceful transition, both the chairperson of the African Union Mr Mousa Faki Mohamat and the executive secretary of Sadc Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax came to pay tribute to President Mnangagwa and his new administration.

The minister said seven decades ago, one of the founding fathers of Africa Dr Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana urged his fellow countrymen to face their challenges with courage to dream, believe, dare, work and achieve.

Taking a cue from a courageous and great statesman of Africa, President Mnangagwa has dared “us to dream, to work, to hope and believe in ourselves again as a nation”, Minister Moyo said.

“We are more than determined to see this nation rise out of the ashes of the last two decades,” he said.

“You may want to know that for us ministers, there are no weekends under the new dispensation. With boundless energy and wisdom, our President has in the past six months traversed the globe with one enduring message that Zimbabwe is open for business.”

Speaking to The Herald, Dean of African ambassadors Mr Mawampanga Mwana Nanga said Africa Day signifies the continent’s freedom and unity.

“On this day we celebrate the requirements of African people to be free, united and in that as our forefathers said we have strength and prospects for prosperity,” he said. “In March this year we had our leaders converged in Kigali and they came up with significantly one thing that will make Africa a free trade area that will eventually lead into free movement of businesses and services and bring Africa together as a free market.”

Saharawi Ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Tayeb Sadik Bachir said: “Africa Day is a great day for all Africans as we take time to celebrate our freedon from colonial bondage have suffered for many years under foreign occupation by the western countries.”

Zambian ambassador to Zimbabwe Mr Emmanuel Tawana Chenda said there was reason to celebrate Africa Day because it is a day when Africans take occasion to celebrate the continent’s de-colonisation and to re-affirm the commitment by its four fathers to unite the Africans.

In his congratulatory message to President Mangagwa, Russian leader Mr Vladimir Putin said Africa Day symbolises the aspirations of Africans as a whole.

“Please accept my sincere congratulations on the occasion of Africa Day, a significant holiday symbolising the aspirations of the peoples of your continent to freedom, peace and unity.

“For decades of independent development, African countries have achieved considerable success in social and economic spheres. Within the framework of the African union, as well as other regional and sub-regional associations, mutually beneficial integration processes are being promoted, and coordination of actions to resolve local conflicts and crises has been established.

“Russia notes with satisfaction the growing role of African States in international affairs and supports the efforts to build a just and democratic world order, and to counter terrorism, extremism, trans-border crime, and other threats and challenges to regional and global security,” Mr Putin said in his message.

“Let me reiterate that Russia is ready to expand the traditionally friendly relations with African partners, both bilaterally and in various multilateral formats, and to continue its active participation in programmes of assistance for Africa under the auspices of the UN, G-20 and BRICS.”

Turkey foreign affairs minister Mr Mevlut Cavusoglu said evolving political institutions in Africa had led to the emergence of a strong middle class.

“As Turkey marks the annual Africa Day, I take the opportunity to celebrate Africa’s achievements and rejoice in our developing partnership. Africa’s ascendency makes all Turks proud and motivates us to engage in closer ties and cooperation. Political institutions around Africa are evolving even as we are witnessing the emergence of a strong middle class in many African countries,” he said.

“The continent has the aspiration to take strides across all Sustainable Development Goals. Africa’s aspirations include not only eliminating absolute poverty, but also reducing inequality, offering a wealth of valuable education opportunities to all and reinforcing good governance as the norm. Africa operates increasingly as a cohesive unit. The Continental Free Trade Area Agreement has been a critical milestone that will shape the future of Africa.”

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