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Lungu graces Mozambique Uhuru celebrations

PRESIDENT Lungu (right) with Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi in Maputo yesterday. PICTURE: SALIM HENRY/STATE HOUSE.

EMELDA MUSONDA, Maputo
PRESIDENT Lungu was yesterday among other Heads of State and Government who attended the 40th Independence anniversary celebrations of Mozambique.
The commemoration was held under the theme: `Consolidating National Unity, Peace and Progress’.
Other Heads of State who attended the celebrations were Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe, President Hage Geingob of Namibia and Tanzania’s Jakaya Kikwete.
And Machava Stadium in Maputo, the arena of celebrations, was a hive of activity with various cultural dance troupes entertaining the jubilant crowd simultaneously at a ceremony that started at 10:30 hours.
As Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi made his grand entry into the stadium, he was greeted with shouts of jubilation and the ‘Oyee Mozambique’ slogan.
President Nyusi inspected a guard of honour before proceeding to receive and light the National Torch of Unity, a symbol of national peace and unity.
The torch was presented by a citizen who turned 40 yesterday to coincide with the Independence Day of Mozambique – June 25, 2015.
Adding colour to the event were the display of parades comprising children, combatants of the national liberation struggle, citizens who turned 40 years old on the day, all clad in national colours.
The security wings were not short of skill as they also mesmerised the audience during the parade.
Spectacular were also the air show and deployment of paratroopers who charmed the crowds with their movements.
Earlier, President Lungu and his Namibian counterpart President Geingob laid wreaths at the Heroes Square in honour of Mozambique’s first President Samora Machel and other departed Mozambican heroes.
President Machel died in 1986 in a plane crash as he was returning from a frontline states meeting held in Zambia.
Other Heads of State that laid wreaths at the monument of the Mozambican heroes were Mr Mugabe and Mr Kikwete.
Former Presidents Hifikepunye Pohamba of Namibia, Benjamin Mkapa of Tanzania and Festus Mogae of Botswana also laid wreaths.
SADC chairperson Robert Mugabe said President Machel and other departed heroes left a legacy that has produced other revolutionary legacies in Africa.
Speaking to journalists shortly after laying a wreath, President Mugabe said the liberation of Mozambique was the making of Zimbabwe and Namibia’s independence as well as the coming of political dispensation for South Africa.
“The Independence of Mozambique meant that we now have a country next to us that we can use as a launching pad for our revolution. It also meant that the people of Mozambique were now free to also join in the liberation struggle,” he said.
President Mugabe said the commemoration also comes with some sad memories of the great sons of Africa who are no more.
He was, however, glad that some heroes like Amando Guebuza, Joaquim Chissano and Eduardo Mondlane are still alive adding that there is reason for African leaders to celebrate their achievements as long as they are alive.
“That is why we say together with KK [former Zambia’s President Kenneth Kaunda] that this is our making of the freedom in Africa and the making of freedom for other countries in Southern Africa,” President Mugabe said.
Meanwhile, President Lungu was along with other heads of State hosted to a luncheon by President Nyusi at Ponta Vermella Palace – the State House of Mozambique.

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