Address by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic
of South Africa, the Honourable Ms Sue van der Merwe on the Occasion of the National
Day of the Republic of Tanzania, Pretoria Country Club, 26 April 2005
Excellency, The High Commissioner of the Republic of Tanzania,
High Commissioner or Ambassador) Mwambulukutu
zajioni mabibi nama bwana (Ladies and gentlemen, good evening)
It is my privilege
and honour to be present here this evening to congratulate Tanzania and its people
on the occasion of the celebration of its 41st Anniversary since independence.
One behalf of the South African Government and its people, I would like to convey
our best wishes on your national day celebrations.
The historical ties that
bind us date back during our struggle to attain majority rule. After Tanzania
became liberated from the yoke of British colonialism in 1961, your country and
people did not focus on their narrow self-interests and forget about other countries
still under minority rule such a South Africa. Instead, Tanzania became the home
of many of the liberation movements that were still seeking self-determination
on the African continent. Tanzania also served as host to the OAU Liberation Committee
which harnessed the collective effort of a number of African countries to support
the various liberation movements of the time, including our own.
like to acknowledge these contributions and pay special homage to the sacrifices
of Tanzanians from all walks of life who ensured the liberation of our own country.
Speaking at the welcoming dinner in honour of Prime Minister Sumaye in October
2004, Deputy President Zuma made the point that:
We cannot forget the solidarity,
which was displayed by the Tanzanian people for the cause of our struggle for
liberation. Fond memories of Morogoro, which was once and for a long time the
Headquarters of the ANC, Mazimbu where the Solomon Mahlangu Freedom College was
situated, Kongwa and Dakawa, wherein our cadres underwent intense training in
readiness to liberate this country, are still with us and will remain with us
forever. Ours is a relationship forged through struggle, and will therefore definitely
stand the test of time.
On 9 July 1992, when the late ANC President Oliver
Tambo handed over ANC settlements in Mazimbu and Dakawa to then Tanzania President
Hassan Ali Mwinyi, he expressed the hope that they would remain as symbols of
friendship and solidarity between our peoples.
Thus, from a very early period
in the history of our countries we shared a strong commitment for the liberation
of our continent as well as the creation of a better Africa and a better world.
Indeed, our relations go beyond mere symbolism and elegant words but continues
to be driven by concrete actions. Today, Tanzania continues in its efforts to
bring about the realisation of the rebirth of our continent by working in partnership
with sister countries in general and with South Africa in particular in the Burundi
On the bilateral front our relations have found concrete
expression through the signing by Presidents Mbeki and Mkapa, of a Memorandum
of Understanding on Trade and Industry programme focusing on areas of project
development, research and technology, trade facilitation, development of physical
and economic infrastructure and spatial development.
offer viable business opportunities for the South African investors and exporters
as means of facilitating increased job creation and skills and technological transfer
in both countries. More than 150 South Africa companies are economically active
in Tanzania, and this is rated as premier investment destination in Africa for
South African business people. The two-way people-to-people collaboration between
our countries is also on the increase and should be encouraged.
you know, our countries share similar constitutional developments, challenges,
historical ties and views on multilateral issues. We should therefore continue
to utilise the large reservoir of goodwill, which exists for the benefit of both
our countries and that of the continent.
The rebirth of the continent as
well as the prominence of the African voice on global governance issues will largely
depend on the commitment that each of us make individually as countries in the
transformation of our societies by responding to their needs and wants in true
democratic fashion. It will also depend on the active role we play within multilateral
contexts to bring about the transformation of global governance structures such
as the United Nations as well as the Bretton Woods Institutions to ensure a just
and equal world.
We pay tribute our African Tanzanian sisters and brothers
who continue to play a role towards the creation of a better world for future
generations. We therefore remain committed to build on the victories we have made
thus far to bring about the rebirth of Africa and making the twenty first century
truly an African one. We call on your support to fulfil our mission of Consolidating
the African Agenda through home-grown solutions and using the African Union and
its organs as a unifying vehicle. Just like its predecessor, the OAU and its Liberation
Committee, we see the AU and its development programme, the NEPAD as realistic
measures to ensure that Africa enjoys its rightful place as an equal player amongst
the community of nations.
You will agree with me that in today's globalising
world, as developing countries we face the constant threat of marginalisation.
We therefore need to use our institutional structures such as SADC to create a
strong regional economic community that will ensure economic well-being, improvement
of the standards of living and quality of life, freedom and social justice and
peace and security for the peoples of Southern Africa. This shared vision is anchored
on the common values and principles and the historical and cultural affinities
that exist between the peoples of Southern Africa.
We are very proud that
our country was elected to host the Pan-African Parliament. It brings a particular
African prestige to our region and our country and we are of course delighted
that the President of that parliament is both a Tanzanian and a woman!
me take this opportunity to also wish you well in the preparations for your general
elections to be held later on this year. I believe that this will contribute to
the growing trend towards democratisation and the consolidation of people-based
and focused institutions of service delivery.
On behalf of the South African
people, I wish you a happy Anniversary.
Asanteni sana. (Thank you very much)