President Jacob Zuma has urged President Ian Khama to be active upon retirement next April saying he is still young and has plenty of energy.
Speaking during the session of Bi-National Commission (BNC), he said Khama has set a good example of abiding by the country’s Constitution limiting the Presidency to two terms, saying leaders should not have any excuses to manipulate the law to extend their stay in power.
“You have provided good leadership for your country and the region. When you were chairing meetings you ensured that we arrive at the summit on time, unlike politicians who would delay discussions. I used to think that retirement was for old people, and I urge you to use your time in retirement to help in finding solutions to Africa’s many problems,” Zuma said. Khama responded that he is retiring from the Presidency as per Botswana’s Constitution but will continue to work for the improvement of the lives of Batswana. He also expressed concern at the ongoing political turmoil in Zimbabwe and said he hopes that the SADC region will find a solution to the problem in the nearest future.
During the BNC, the two leaders noted with satisfaction progress made in the deepening cooperation between the two countries on sectors such as agriculture, energy, health, defence, justice and security. Other sectors that have made satisfactory progress
“The two Heads of State noted that the two countries have concluded 38 bilateral agreements and Memoranda of Understanding in various areas of cooperation which was reflective of the scale and strength of the bilateral cooperation that subsists between the two countries,” says a joint communiqué issued at the end of the meeting just before noon on Friday.
The BNC also emphasised the importance of the ongoing economic cooperation between the two countries in terms of trade and investment and further called for prioritisation of economic projects that will create jobs, and poverty alleviation.
One of the areas that did not escape the attention of the two leaders is to enhance cooperation in border management and patrols to combat growing trends of transnational and organised crimes such as drug trafficking, terrorism, human trafficking, poaching, cyber crime and irregular migration.
“The two leaders expressed solidarity in pursuing common positions regarding critical issues under discussion at the continental level such as the envisaged institutional reforms of the African Union. They emphasised the need to adopt a systematic and coordinated approach in collective efforts to advance Africa’s aspirations,” the communiqué reads.