Government has applauded South Africans for conducting their elections in a peaceful and transparent manner.
South Africans on Wednesday held their sixth democratic elections which will usher in the country’s fourth-elected President since the end of apartheid in 1994.
The director for Africa, Asia and the Pacific in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade Ambassador Alice Mageza said Zimbabwe was committed to continuing working with her counterparts in seeking long lasting solutions to the common challenges that confront them.
She was speaking during the 25th Anniversary of South Africa’s Freedom Day in Harare yesterday.
“This is a day that is not only synonymous with the end of apartheid and restoration of dignity for the majority of the people of South Africa, but the attainment of the right to vote which the people of South Africa freely exercised yesterday (Wednesday).
“On behalf of the Government and people of the Republic of Zimbabwe, and indeed on my own behalf,
“I wish to convey our most sincere congratulations to the Government and people of the Republic of South Africa on the commemoration of this historic day.
“Let me also take this opportunity to extend the congratulations of the Government of Zimbabwe for the very peaceful elections that were held yesterday,” Ambassador Mageza said.
She said the liberation movements of the two countries shared the trenches in the fight against foreign domination and out of the common struggle an unshakeable bond was born.
“That common bond, together with our shared history of culture has inextricably intertwined the destinies of our peoples,” she said.
Ambassador Mageza said relations between the two countries continue to grow from strength to strength and in March this year they consolidated those relations during the third session of the Zimbabwe/South Africa Bi-National Commission.
She said following the devastation caused by Cyclone Idai in parts of Zimbabwe, once again South Africa came to the country’s aide and dispatched a high level delegation to assist the affected.
South Africa Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Mr Mphakama Mbete said Zimbabwe was a home to many graves of their gallant fighters who shared trenches with the country’s freedom fighters during the Chimurenga.
“We consider Zimbabwe and South Africa as Siamese twins bound by an umbilical cord of deep rooted affinity, of a social, economic and a common struggle against colonial domination. We are one country separated by artificial borders that were imposed on our ancestors,” he said.
Ambassador Mbete said in 2015 the two countries decided that their bilateral engagement must be coordinated and elevated to the level of a Bi-National Commission.
He said so far 46 Bilateral Agreements and Memoranda of Understanding have been signed and these were at various stages of implementation.
“The MoU on the establishment of a One Stop Border Post at Beitbridge is one of the flagship of the lot,” Ambassador Mbete said.
The event was attended by heads of mission, members of the diplomatic corps and senior Government officials.