President Lazarus Chakwera of Malawi has arrived Zimbabwe today for a two-day State visit.
Chakwera who assumed office after winning a run-off election in June, is making his inaugural visit to Zimbabwe accompanied by senior Government officials who already were in the country to bolster ties between the two countries.
Malawian Ambassador to Zimbabwe Annie Yauka Kumwenda, told the Herald on Tuesday that “President Chakwera will be meeting with his brother, his Zimbabwean counterpart President Mnangagwa. Activities will include a brief meeting with the Malawi nationals living in Zimbabwe and laying of wreaths at the Zimbabwe National Heroes Acre.”
Malawi’s Foreign Affairs Minister Eisenhower Nduwa Mkaka has led a 26-member delegation who already are in Zimbabwe, paving the way for President Lazarus Chakwera’s visit.
Both countries are known to share a long history of ties which dates back to the pre-colonial era.
President Chakwera is currently touring the region and had last week visited Zambia ahead of his trip to Zimbabwe.
While in Zimbabwe, President Chakwera’s engagements will likely be concentrated on areas of cooperation and strengthening of the cordial relations that already exist between both countries.
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Dr Sibusiso Moyo had already met with Minister Mkaka at his office in Harare on Sunday, in preparation for the meeting of both their presidents.
Issues discussed by both ministers included economic cooperation and the transit of citizens during the Covid-19-induced restrictions to contain the pandemic, amongst others.
Dr Moyo said: “As a practice within the region, any Head of State emerging out of a successful election normally pays courtesy calls on his colleagues in the region.
“We rekindled a lot of history between Zimbabwe and Malawi. We used to be the same people during the era of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.
“This scenario concretises the symbiotic relationship which exists between the two countries.”
Minister Mkaka said the long relationship between the two countries and how they could assist each other going forward, formed the basis of what they discussed.
“It has been a great meeting between my counterpart and I, bordering on strengthening the relationship between Malawi and Zimbabwe.
“We have a long relationship that dates back even before we were colonised. We have a lot in common and we have more reason to work together. If we work together, we are going to improve the lives of our people,” said Minister Mkaka.
While in Zimbabwe, President Lazarus Chakwera is also expected to meet with SADC ambassadors. Malawi and Zimbabwe share common cultures, values, and history and along with Zambia, they once were one country under the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.