Remarks by Deputy President Jacob Zuma during the Official Luncheon Hosted by the Cape Verdean Prime Minister Jose Maria Neves, Praia, Republic of Cape Verde, 10 August 2004

Mr Prime Minister
Excellencies, Cape Verdean and South African Government Ministers
Premier Marshoff and the delegation from the Free State Province of South Africa
Excellencies, Ambassadors Da Luz and Mokou
Members of the Business Community
Distinguished Guests

It is an honour for my delegation and I to visit this country following your kind invitation extended to us during your visit to South Africa in July last year.

Allow me, Dear Colleague, to extend our heartfelt appreciation of the outstanding hospitality we have received since our arrival, which is indicative of the very warm relations between our two countries.

I must emphasise that I am delighted and encouraged by the fruitful discussions we had this morning, Mr Prime Minister, and also for the opportunity to pay a courtesy call on the President of the Republic and the President of the National Assembly.

These interactions have further indicated to us that we are of one mind regarding the necessity of further enhancing and developing our relations in political, social, economic and other fields.

Distinguished guests, let me point out that we are also delighted to visit this country; just a few weeks after our country had the honour to posthumously bestow the Order of the Companions of OR Tambo, on one of the most distinguished sons of this country, and a hero of the struggle against colonialism, Amilcar Cabral.

This is the highest honour that South Africa bestows on friends and comrades from outside our borders. The award was received in Pretoria by Mrs Ana Maria Cabral on the 16th of June.

Mr Prime Minister, our two peoples, while geographically far apart, share a history of colonialism, slavery and a long struggle which eventually secured freedom for our peoples. As a result of our similar histories, we also share rich and diverse cultures that today contribute to our success.

We are also in agreement regarding the need for peace and stability in the continent and the world. From our side, we remain steadfast in our determination to contribute to the renewal of the continent, to see an end to conflicts and wars and to achieve peace and stability, democracy respect for human rights, sustainable development and economic prosperity for our continent.

We believe that Africa is poised for success, given the determination to tackle these issues within the ambit of the African Union.

My Dear Colleague, during your visit to South Africa last year, it became clear that there are areas of potential co-operation between our two countries, particularly in the fields of infrastructure development, environmental protection, sports and tourism, aviation, fisheries and education.

We are encouraged by the progress made in discussions today on these matters by our respective delegations, from both government and the business sector.

I must reiterate that we truly value this partnership, and look forward to the further development of the various areas of co-operation between our two countries.

Mr Prime Minister, Ladies and Gentlemen, please join me in proposing a toast, to South Africa and Cape Verde!

I thank you.

Issued by: The Presidency

10 August 2004

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