Tendai Mugabe Senior Reporter
PRESIDENT Mugabe yesterday received a special message from President Rafael Correa of Ecuador, inviting him to the fourth Africa-South America Summit to be held in Quito next year.
The message was delivered by Mr Jose Maria Guijarro Garcia, who is the Ecuadorian Under Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The ASA Summit provided a platform for the two continents to discuss issues of mutual interest as they are almost on the same stage of development.
Mr Garcia said his government also wanted to strengthen ties with progressive countries that had stood firm defending their independence such as Zimbabwe.
“I came here as a Special Envoy of President Correa to deliver a special message to President Mugabe,” he said. “Basically, our main goal is to promote the ASA Summit to be held in Ecuador next year.”
At that Summit, Mr Garcia said, leaders of the two continents would discuss the framework under which they could put into practice some of the issues that had been theorised for long.
He said it was time for Southern countries to enter a new phase in terms of development especially in the area of technology.
“We need to work together,” he said. “As you know most of the technology used in the world is developed in Northern countries, I think it is time now that Southern countries also develop the technology, skills and move forward on the basis of respect to our independence, our people and our nations.
“That is something that needs to be put on top of the table. That is something that needs to be strengthened and enhanced from this South-South point of view otherwise its going to be difficult.
“Whenever you talk to Europe or North Africa, you find it difficult for this relationship to develop in that direction. We believe that when Southern countries get together, we will win and we will make sure that history depends on us and not the North. For that, South America needs Africa and Africa also needs South America.”
Mr Garcia saluted President Mugabe for his uncompromised stance on Zimbabwe’s resources and independence adding that Quito wanted to strengthen relations with Harare.
He said Ecuador had several things to learn from Zimbabwe and President Mugabe’s leadership.
“The other reason why I am here is that we are also trying to strengthen our relations with those progressive countries that have had strong stance in defending the interests of their people,” he said.
“In that sense, we have been following the recent history in Zimbabwe and we believe that it has been most inspiring in a number of ways. I was telling His Excellency that we have a lot to learn from what has been happening here over the past years.
“I was telling him that our revolution is quite a young revolution so we feel it is very much inspiring to get close to leaders of such a quality and historical meaning such as President Mugabe.”
The last ASA Summit was held in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea in 2013 under the theme “Strategies and Mechanisms for Strengthening South-South Co-operation”.