President Magufuli begins state visit to Malawi

25Apr 2019
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
President Magufuli begins state visit to Malawi

PRESIDENT John Magufuli yesterday began  a two-day state visit to Malawi at the invitation of his counterpart, Peter Mutharika.

President John Magufuli with his host, President Arthur Mutharika, shortly after jetting into Kamuzu International Airport in Lilongwe yesterday at the start of a two-day official visit to Malawi. Photo: State House

A statement by the Directorate of Presidential Communication at State House in Dar es Salaam said while in Malawi, President Magufuli will hold talks with his host aimed at strengthening bilateral relations between the two neighbouring countries.

The statement said the Tanzanian leader will also lay a wreath on the grave of former Malawian President Bingu Mutahrika.

On Thursday, the statement added, President Magufuli will launch the 2019 tobacco buying season and address tobacco growers in the country.

Magufuli will later leave Malawi for Mbeya to begin an eight-day tour of the country's breadbasket.

This is the first time for Magufuli to visit Malawi since he rose to power in 2015.

President Magufuli made his first foreign trip to Rwanda in April 2016, five months after assuming office and thereafter he visited Uganda and Kenya.

Last month, Tanzania offered food and drugs aid to support the victims of Cyclone Idai and floods. The disaster struck hard in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe causing hundreds of deaths and leaving more than a thousand people displaced. The Tanzanian aid includes 24 tonnes of drugs and 200 tonnes of maize and 14 tonnes of rice.

The aid was handed over to the envoys of the affected countries in Tanzania by the Foreign Affairs and East African .

Regional and International Cooperation Minister, Professor Palamagamba Kabudi and the Minister for Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Ummy Mwalimu at the Julius Nyerere International Airport (JNIA) on March 19th.

Speaking during the loading of the consignment, Prof. Kabudi said the move was in fulfilment of President John Magufuli`s directive to extend support to the countries after the devastating tragedy.

Professor Kabudi pointed out that after getting the news; the President spoke to his counterparts and saw it wise to extend support. `These people are our neighbours.

They are our family and we all are members of the Southern African Development Community (SADC). We stand together with all the people in the affected countries, bearing in mind that a similar situation might happen in our country.

As our neighbours, their problems are ours; their death is our death….we live by helping each other, ` said Professor Kabudi.

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