From Cletus Mushanawani in Singapore
PRESIDENT Mugabe today arrived in Singapore where he is expected to attend his daughter Bona’s graduation ceremony on Saturday.
He was welcomed at the airport by Zimbabwe’s consular general to Singapore, Mr Claudius Nhema, and consulate staff.
President Mugabe, who is accompained by the First Lady, Amai Grace Mugabe, Bona and senior Government officials made a stop-over in Singapore on his way to the Arab-African Summit to be hosted by Kuwait next week so the First Family can witness Bona’s graduation.
Bona, who holds a first degree in accounting, will be graduating with a Masters’ Degree in Banking and Finance. Her parents have been speaking glowingly of her achievements and is expected to tie the knot with Simba Chikore next March.
Speaking at the Today’s Woman Inter-denominational conference held in Harare recently, Amai Mugabe said she had tried to raise her daughter in an upright and God-fearing manner.
President Mugabe announced Bona’s graduation during the commissioning and handover of two boys’ hostels, a 79-seater bus and a computer laboratory at Chishawasha Mission Primary School in Goromonzi last month.
He said: “Tina sisi vari pano ava vane zita rinonzi Bona. Akaenda kuDominican Convent takazomuendesa kunanaHong Kong achindoita zvidzidzo zveaccounts. Akazoita Master’s kuSingapore, saka ari kuenda kugraduation musi wa16 November.”
After the graduation, President Mugabe is expected to join about 65 world leaders at the Arab-African Summit to run from November 19 to 20.
Next week’s summit comes after participants in the two-day Arab-African Economic Summit that ended on Tuesday issued a host of recommendations concerning Afro-Arab partnership promotion.
The Arab and African national and regional financial institutions were encouraged to continue supporting socio-economic development including achievement of the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.
The meeting also recommended that financial institutions should intensify their efforts in financing small and medium-sized projects through supporting operations of national development banks and social funds in the Arab and African regions in view of their role in reducing unemployment and providing new business opportunities in the private sector.
On investments, the participants recommended encouragement of African and Arab financial institutions to develop mechanisms that encourage inter-investments in the Arab and African regions, and identify investment opportunities while working to remove difficulties and obstacles facing investors.
They called for improvement of the investment climate in both the Arab and African countries through further reforms in policies, procedures, and laws relating to domestic and foreign investment to attract more investments by both public and private sectors, particularly direct domestic and foreign investments.
On food security, the participants invited Arab and African countries to preserve the limited capacity of agricultural resources-land and water-for the renewal of their services through adopting agricultural policies and practices appropriate to achieve food security based on agricultural sustainability.
They called upon governments and relevant stakeholders to adopt all necessary policies and procedures to halt desertification and soil erosion and work to improve the efficiency of water irrigation and improve water productivity through the use of modern irrigation methods and sound agricultural practices.