JPCC Strengthen Relations

| June 1, 2015

The Joint Permanent Commission on Cooperation (JPCC) remains one of the viable mechanisms through which Botswana can structure and regularly assess progress in the implementation of agreed commitments to grown bilateral cooperation with Kenya.

Speaking at the senior officials meeting of the fourth session of the JPCC between Botswana and Kenya, permanent secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mr Lapologang Lekoa said the presence of the Kenyans bears testimony to the friendly relations the two governments and people have built since Botswana attained independence.

“Our government truly values the relationship with Kenya and will continue to work with you to deepen our cooperation through bilateral and multilateral avenues for mutual benefit,” said Mr Lekoa. He indicated that this year’s JPCC was long overdue since the last session was held as far back as 2011.

“We obviously have a lot of issues to discuss and I am therefore hopeful that during the next few days we will engage in fruitful exchanges to address both outstanding and new areas in order to ensure that our ministers have concise, action-oriented, time bound and mutually beneficial outcomes that aance our common development goals,” he said.

He further said as the two countries deliberated on the best ways of aancing their bilateral cooperation, they should remain vigilant to the new opportunities and challenges of present times.

Mr Lekoa said any opportunities or challenges identified might also find context in the regional, continental and international developments that continue to re-define or re-shape the way both countries conduct international relations.

“If we are to derive meaningful benefit from the sessions of the Botswana-Kenya JPCC, the outcomes of our deliberations should be transformational in nature,” he said, adding that both countries should note the progress they have made so far with a view to building on it to address the remaining challenges.

He said there had been eight exchanges of official delegations in various sectors since the last JPCC and all the official exchanges had relevance to the aancement of the commitments agreed to in the previous meetings.

“Some of these previous official exchanges focused on agriculture and livestock, including beef and dairy farming, sports, local governments, mining, cooperatives, health and public administration,” he said.

Mr Lekoa indicated that the exchange by the two head of states of both countries also certainly served to further solidify Botswana and Kenya relations.

For her part, Kenyana High Commissioner, Ms Jean Kimani said the 4th JPCC session would give the two countries the opportunity to reflect on achievements since the last session.

“We can now sit and reflect on the status of our political, socio-economic and trade relations and share experiences going forward,” she said. She indicated that the Kenyan government values the friendship it has forged with Botswana over the years.

Ms Kimani said the establishment of the JPCC between the two countries acted as a framework to promote mutual relations.

“I am confident that the outcome of this meeting will indeed cement our cooperation into new areas and deepen our relations further,” she said.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: Governance

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