Published On: Tue, Mar 5th, 2019

Ramaphosa visit raises Zimbabwe revival hopes

South African deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa

South African president Cyril Ramaphosa

from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE – ZIMBABWE is eagerly awaiting the visit of South  African president Cyril Ramaphosa with his tour set to culminate in the two neighbouring countries signing more bilateral agreements.

Hopes are high in the crisis-plagued Zimbabwe with Ramaphosa’s upcoming days after another neighbouring country, Botswana, extending a 1 billion Pula (about R1,4 billion) credit facility to capacitate Zimbabwe’s private sector.

Ramaphosa will on March 12 lead a delegation for a meeting with Zimbabwean  counterparts under the auspices of the third session of Bi-National Commission (BNC).

A delegation from South Africa is expected in Harare on Thursday to lay foundation of the BNC.

Sibusiso Moyo, Zimbabwe Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister, said the third session of BNC would review progress in the implementation of the previously agreed Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs).

“These cover the political, economic, social and technical sectors of the two countries,” Moyo said.

The BNC is the highest bilateral framework of cooperation between Zimbabwe and South Africa.

Host president, Emmerson Mnangagwa, will meet his visiting counterpart,  Ramaphosa, on Tuesday next week.

Among the agreements to be reviewed include cross-border trading cooperation, energy, environment, information communication technologies (ICT) and sports and recreation.

Lindiwe Sisulu, South Africa’s International Relations and Cooperation Minister, said one of the key issues on the BNC agenda was to urge the West, to remove sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe.

“I thought by now sanctions imposed on Zimbabwe Government and its people would be lifted to enable the country to start afresh after all the challenges they have gone through,” Sisulu twitted.

South Africa is Zimbabwe’s biggest trading partner.

Millions of Zimbabweans have over the years sought sanctuary in South Africa following years of economic and political challenges.

– CAJ News

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