Zimbabwe President Emerson Mnangagwa has described his Ugandan counterpart Yoweri Museveni as an elder brother who has stood with the southern African country in its tough economic situations.
Speaking as a special guest at Uganda’s 57 Independence anniversary in Sironko District on Wednesday, October 09, 2019, President Mnangagwa, who replaced Robert Mugabe, now deceased, said Uganda has always inspired Zimbabwe.
“I am here today on behalf of the people of the Republic of Zimbabwe at the invitation of my elder brother, President Museveni. Congratulations upon your 57 years of independence and freedom. I’m happy to be here to consolidate our relations. Your independence inspired us. You are developing your country in peace and love, we aspire to follow your steps,” he added.
“Zimbabwe is under sanctions for 20 years but with the help of our sister countries like Uganda, we still survive,” he added.
In response, his host, President Museveni, commended the Zimbabwe leader for honoring the invitation.
“We are honoured that President Mnangagwa accepted the invitation to be our guest of honour. His Excellency Mnangagwa was here last in 1963 when he was being smuggled for military training in China. I saw he had not been here for a long time and I decided to invite him and he agreed,” Mr Museveni said.
“Thank you, President Mnangagwa, for accepting our invitation. If you invite a brother to a party and he comes, the relationship is strengthened,” he added.
This years’ Independence Day is being commemorated under the theme ‘Consolidation of National Unity, Security, Freedom and Prosperity’.
In his speech, Mr Museveni highlighted the achievements of the NRM government over the years.
“In 33 years, we have been able to recover minimum economic recovery, build a strong army and start the process of development and address the issue of social services while the population increases to 44M from 14M since 1986,” he said.
“Uganda was here even before colonialism. Even before colonialism, this area was in turmoil. This army that we were able to build has brought peace in this part of Africa for the first time in five hundred years,” he added.