Minister Dlamini Zuma arrives in Jamaica ahead of the SA-AU Caribbean Diaspora Conference

Kingston - South African Foreign Minister, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma arrived in Kingston on Tuesday 15 March 2005, where she will lead a South African delegation to the South Africa-African Union - Caribbean Diaspora Conference scheduled for Wednesday - Friday 16-18 March 2005.

Minister Dlamini Zuma's delegation includes Minister Dr. Pallo Jordan, Speaker of the National Assembly, Ms. Baleka Mbete, academics, business leaders, cultural organizations and civil society.

Prime Minister of Jamaica, PJ Paterson will deliver the Opening address, with Minister Dlamini Zuma delivering an opening and closing statements to Conference together with her Jamaican counterpart Minister Knight. Minister Pallo Jordan will deliver a paper on Pan Africanism revisited while the Speaker of the National Assembly, Ms. Baleka Mbete will participate in a panel discussion on Knowing Sharing.

Other South Africans of note who are scheduled to participate in panel discussions include Thami Mazwai, Christine Qunta, Dr. Eddie Maloka, Nomboniso Gasa, Prof. Bernard Magubane and Thami Sokutu.

The Conference is jointly organized by the South African Government, the Jamaican Government and the African Union, under the theme "Towards Unity and United Action by Africans and the African Diaspora in the Caribbean for a Better World". Over 250 participants are expected to attend the Conference, whose objectives are:

  • Creating linkages between Africa and the Diaspora while initiating dialogue on common challenges.
  • Strengthening partnerships and co-operation between the peoples of the two regions.
    · Establishment of mechanisms for building stronger political and economic relations between Africa and the Caribbean.
  • Identification of new opportunities for future collaboration that can be of mutual benefit in the political, economic and socio-cultural spheres.
  • Development of a common agenda for confronting common problems that afflict Africa and the Caribbean.
  • And to give concrete meaning to decisions of the African Union on the African Diaspora.

In this regard, it is hoped that the Conference will emerge with the following outcomes:

  • Concrete proposals on economic and trade links in specific areas and embarking on collaborative programmes on common areas of interests;
  • Commitment to solidarity and mutual support in international for a;
  • The institutionalisation of the Africa-Caribbean co-operation and collaboration among government and civil society; and
  • The development of a common agenda for collaboration with the view to furthering the objectives of the African Union.

Issued by Ronnie Mamoepa at +27 82-990-4853

South African High Commission, Kingston, Jamaica

15 March 2005

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