Zambia’s people-centred development inspires Mswati
KING Mswati III has commended Zambia’s development efforts based on a people-centred approach and the commitment by President Lungu to lead the people of Zambia to prosperity.
King Mswati particularly noted the impressive infrastructure development programmes taking place in most parts of the country.
This is according to a joint communiqué issued yesterday after President Lungu’s three-day state visit to Swaziland at the invitation of King Mswati.
“The King observed that there is need for the two countries to explore areas of cooperation and potential for trade, as well as share information, exchange experiences, best practices and visits. He also acknowledged that there are many Zambians in Swaziland who are contributing to the development of the kingdom,” the statement reads in part.
King Mswati called on African countries to stand together and manage their resources, and emphasised the need to find African solutions for African challenges.
He observed that energy is key to the industrialisation agenda and expressed the kingdom’s desire to learn from Zambia’s experience in developing other sources of energy such as coal, bio-fuel and solar.
King Mswati stated that climate change and armyworms affected the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, Swaziland in particular, and expressed the kingdom’s desire to learn how Zambia managed to successfully fight the worms.
“He identified trade opportunities for the kingdom to import maize grain from Zambia given that the country had a surplus, while Swaziland had a deficit,” the statement further reads.
During the official talks held at Lozitha Palace, both heads of state, accompanied by their respective delegations, reviewed a wide range of bilateral, regional and international issues and were satisfied with the bilateral relations between the two countries, founded on long-standing historical, political, economic and cultural ties.
The two leaders recalled and agreed to rekindle the strong bonds of friendship that existed between the then President of Zambia, Kenneth Kaunda, and King Sobhuza II of Swaziland.
And President Lungu commended King Mswati for his able stewardship of the region in his capacity as chairman of SADC.
The President recalled Swaziland’s steadfast support to the frontline states efforts during the liberation struggle in southern Africa by allowing freedom fighters passage through its territory.
“The President called for the revival of the Joint Permanent Commission of Cooperation and strengthened bilateral ties between the two countries, which would also serve as a vehicle to accelerate regional integration,” the statement reads.
President Lungu expressed Zambia’s desire to emulate Swaziland’s emphasis on culture as a way of life, noting that the two nations have shared deep-rooted traditional similarities, in particular, those from the eastern and western parts of Zambia.
Both leaders emphasised the need for African countries to speak with one voice on the reform of the United Nations Security Council during the forthcoming United Nations General Assembly in New York.
At the end of the visit, President Lungu toured the Swazi Milk High-Tech Dairy Farm and the Simunye Sugar Mill.
NANCY SIAME, Lusaka