From Mabasa Sasa in NEW YORK
PRESIDENT Mnangagwa yesterday said he is here for the 73rd Ordinary Session of the United Nations General Assembly to share the story of a nation reinvigorated. Posting on his Twitter handle, @edmnangagwa, soon after arrival, the President said he was proud to represent the Second Republic at the UN.
‘‘I have arrived in New York for the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly. I am here to share our story of a nation reinvigorated, a hope reborn and a dream renewed. I am proud to represent you all and I am proud to represent the new Zimbabwe,’’ he said.
President Mnangagwa arrived at John F Kennedy International Airport in the company of a delegation that included Finance Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube, Reserve Bank Governor Dr John Mangudya, and Deputy Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet (Presidential Communications) Mr George Charamba, among other senior Government officials.
On hand to receive President Mnangagwa were Zimbabwe’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Frederick Shava, and embassy staff.
First Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa, who came earlier, is also here.
The 73rd Ordinary Session of the General Assembly will mark President Mnangagwa’s maiden address to the world’s largest inter-state organisation following his victory in the July 2018 Presidential elections.
President Mnangagwa, who has made engagement and re-engagement with the international community a cornerstone of the drive to transform Zimbabwe into a middle-income by World Bank standards economy by 2030, will also advance Zimbabwe’s economic transformation agenda by meeting key business and political constituencies.
Among his expected engagements here are bilateral talks with business and political leaders, including those from the Zimbabwean community resident in the United States, as part of a charm offensive that has thus far netted investment commitments worth more than $20 billion in less than a year.
The theme for this year’s General Assembly debate dovetails with President Mnangagwa’s crusade to foster sustainable peace and economic equity at home.
World leaders’ discussions this year have been themed: “Making the United Nations relevant to all people: Global Leadership and Shared Responsibilities for Peaceful, Equitable and Sustainable Societies”.
The 73rd Session of the General Assembly started on September 18, 2018, while the General Debate proper – led by Heads of State and Government and/or their representatives – opens on September 25.
Prior to the General Debate, there will be a high-level plenary on global peace to mark the centenary of the birth of South African anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela (The Nelson Mandela Peace Summit).
On September 26, leaders will discuss the global fight against tuberculosis, as a follow up to discussions in February this year.
The following day will focus largely on the review of progress made in the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases. This will be the third time that the UN General Assembly has set aside a day for discussion of this emerging global health concern.