17 May 2017

Zimbabwe: King Letsie III Engages President

Photo: The Herald
President Mugabe met King Letsie III of Lesotho at State House.

President Mugabe yesterday met King Letsie III of Lesotho at State House, where they held high-level talks on various issues to enhance bilateral cooperation and cordial relations between the two countries. The meeting, which was part of King Letsie III's four-day State visit, lasted for more than two hours. Though details of the meeting could not be obtained, King Letsie III indicated on Monday that he intended to thank President Mugabe for his wise leadership which helped stabilise the political situation in his country and the region.

Before the meeting, King Letsie III had visited the National Heroes Acre in the company of Foreign Affairs Minister Simbarashe Mumbengegwi and laid a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

He also visited Lion and Cheetah Park, where he enjoyed a game drive before proceeding to the National Museum and Monuments.

At the National Heroes Acre, King Letsie III was taken on a tour of the shrine by resident curator, Ms Rumbidzai Bvira, who chronicled the history of Zimbabwe from colonialism to independence as depicted on two murals standing on the sides of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

King Letsie III was shown the tomb of the first chairman of zanu-pf's Dare ReChimurenga, Cde Herbert Hamandishe Chitepo and other liberation icons like the late Vice President Joshua Nkomo, who was popularly known as Father Zimbabwe.

He also visited the graves of the first Heroine Cde Sally Mugabe and Cde Arthur Guy Clutton, whom Ms Bvira described as a critical figure in the liberation struggle.

King Letsie III said the National Heroes Acre was a great monument.

"This is a great monument that the people of Zimbabwe, through the wisdom of their leadership and their wisdom, have decided to put up and create to celebrate and remember the struggles that they have gone through to achieve the independence and liberation that they now enjoy today," he said.

"I hope this monument will continue to be an inspiration for current Zimbabweans and for future generations, not only for Zimbabwe, but for other people of the region and continent as a whole. I am glad to have the opportunity to visit for myself this historic monument."

At the Lion and Cheetah Park, King Letsie III enjoyed a game drive, viewing different animals including lions, duiker and impala.

At the National Museum and Monuments, he was taken around by senior curators Messrs Happiness Marufu and Farai Chabata.

The duo took King Letsie through Stone age tools, the Great Zimbabwe tradition, traditional musical instruments, ancient mining and the set up of traditional homes.

Today, King Letsie III is expected to visit Victoria Falls and the Crocodile Farm, both in Matabeleland North Province.

Zimbabwe and Lesotho enjoy cordial relations dating back to the days of the liberation struggle.

Lesotho extended crucial assistance to Zimbabwe during the liberation struggle, which saw eminent political figures receiving education in that country.

President Mugabe played a crucial role in bringing peace and stability to Lesotho when he pre-occupied himself with solving the political turmoil in the mountainous country during his time as the Sadc chairperson.

Zimbabwe and Lesotho are bound together by a common history, similar cultures and strong economic linkages.

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