Zim bids to host ACP-EU conference


Zvamaida Murwira Senior Reporter
ZIMBABWE is ready to bid for the hosting of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly session scheduled for March next year if it secures adequate resources as convening the event in Harare will enhance re-engagement efforts for the Western bloc to remove illegal sanctions it has imposed, a senior Government official has said.
Secretary for Foreign Affairs Ambassador Joey Bimha said this before a parliamentary portfolio committee on Foreign Affairs chaired by Chipinge South MP Cde Enock Porusingazi (Zanu-PF).

The ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Session brings together legislators from Africa, the Caribbean, Pacific and the European Union.
Head of Zimbabwe’s delegation to the ACP-EU, Cde Makhosini Hlongwane, who is also a member of the portfolio committee, had assured Ambassador Bimha that EU legislators were keen to attend the event should Zimbabwe host it.

Initially, Cde Hlongwane had asked what Government’s position was regarding hosting of ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly which he said was critical as it could be used as part of efforts of re-engagement to have the Western bloc remove the illegal embargo.

Ambassador Bimha said Zimbabwe would have to cater for the secretariat’s travel and accommodation expenses while they were in Harare.
Another concern Ambassador Bimha raised was whether or not the EU would attend since it had imposed sanctions against Harare.
He said they would not want a situation where they go out of their way to make preparations only to fail to have a full House after legislators from the EU fail to come.

Cde Hlongwane assured Ambassador Bimha that from his interactions with them, EU legislators would want to visit Zimbabwe like “yesterday.”

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