President Hage Geingob has expressed the need to enhance and consolidate the implementation of existing agreements between Namibia and Botswana.
In his closing remarks at the end of the Heads of State Meeting of the inaugural session Botswana-Namibia Bi-National Commission (BNC) in Gaborone, Botswana, on Friday, Geingob said the two countries should keep their focus clear on what they want to achieve through mutual bilateral cooperation.
“I once again urge our respective ministers and senior officials to work hard towards implementation of decisions we have taken today (Friday). In this implementation, I am also including the two of us (himself and Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi) – co-chairs of the commission – because where political will is needed for some of the projects, we must also stand ready to deliver. I have no doubt that I can count on your excellency’s support towards this endeavour,” said Geingob in his statement availed to the media.
On her part, international relations minister Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah called for the speedy execution of different agreements between Namibia and Botswana, particularly in the space of political, diplomatic, legal, economic, social, defence and security cooperation.
Nandi-Ndaitwah was speaking during the closing ceremony of the minister’s meeting of the inaugural session of BNC.
She said speedy execution of the agreements can convert into financial advantages for the two countries.
“Signing of agreements should not be for the sake of signing agreements. I implore our senior officials to redouble efforts by ensuring that such agreements are implemented without delay,” said Nandi-Ndaitwah.
The minister added the two countries have reached a common understanding in the areas of political, diplomatic, legal, economic, social, defence and security cooperation, and the onus now is to implement the decisions taken into concrete programmes, as that is what the two countries’ respective heads of state and the general public are counting on them for.
One of the agreements involves the use of identity documents instead of passports to travel between the two countries.
The agreement is to be signed only next year.
Nandi-Ndaitwah also urged the two countries to continue working together, particularly in the international sphere, with a focus on maintaining peace and security in the sub-region and around the globe.
“We need peace if sustainable development is to become a reality. The current conflict between Russia and Ukraine is an example of how absences of peace in one area can impact other parts of the globe,” she said.
The BNC is a high-level bilateral platform that replaced the Joint Commission on Cooperation and the Joint Permanent Commission on Security and Defence between the two countries through an agreement signed during the working visit by Botswana President Mokgweetsi Masisi to Windhoek in January this year.