President returns from E Guinea
PRESIDENT Mugabe returned home yesterday from Equatorial Guinea where he was among several Heads of State and Government that attended the 4th AfricaArab summit.
The President who was accompanied by the First Lady Dr Grace Mugabe, was received at the Harare International Airport by Vice Presidents Emmerson Mnangagwa and Phelekezela Mphoko, Cabinet Ministers, senior Government officials and service chiefs.
Themed: “Together for a Sustainable Economic Development”, the high-profile summit saw the adoption of three main documents - the Malabo declaration; support to the state of Palestine; and, action plan for the three-year period leading to the next summit to be held in 2019.
During the summit, President Mugabe delivered yet another thought-provoking speech on the international arena when he said the union between Africa and Arab nations had potential to transform the global economic course and challenge western hegemony.
He was one of the selected Heads of States who addressed the working session of the summit on Wednesday.
Heads of State and Government from Africa and Arab nations, also directed Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Finance from the two regions to convene within the next six months to craft a framework that was likely to see Arab States allotting more funding to African nations.
At the third Arab Africa summit held in Kuwait in 2013, Kuwait availed a $3-billion facility for developmental initiatives for African states.
It is anticipated that the new funding for the next three years will be larger as more Arab nations are expected to emulate Kuwait.
Zimbabwe has benefited from the Kuwait funding through a $35-million citrus farming project to be established in Matabeleland South as well as construction of two new hospitals through the Ministry of Health and Child Care.
The summit was jointly organised by the African Union Commission and the League of Arab States with the aim of promoting development by strengthening trade and investment among Gulf and African states.
Heads of State and Government at the summit also resolved a potentially explosive situation when Morocco attempted to boycott the summit protesting the presence of the Saharawi Republic before the matter was amicably resolved.