South Africa is proud to be closely associated with a country like India which has a strong economy, Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini said today as he thanked New Delhi for helping the “poorest of the poor” in his community.

Zwelithini said the partnership between South Africa and India was gaining momentum through BRICS and the bilateral ties have grown in areas such as skills development, agriculture, solar energy among others.

Speaking at the official handover of two tractors by Minister of State for External Affairs V K Singh to assist in rural agricultural development, Zwelithini praised India, saying the country was helping the poorest of the poor through various skills programmmes.

“This gift of tractors symbolises a warm friendship,” tweeted Ruchira Kamboj, High Commissioner of India to South Africa.

“South Africa and India partnership through BRICS is gaining momentum. Today we stand proud to be associated with a country like India who have a growth rate of 6.7 per cent,” said Zwelithini.

“Our bilateral relations have clearly shown an interest in skills development, cooperation in agriculture, combating drought in South Africa, solar energy, strategies to combat HIV/AIDs, rural women empowerment and livestock development, especially in KwaZulu Natal,” he said.

He thanked India for providing technical and economic cooperation programme to Zulus in the fields of agriculture, rural entrepreneurship development and IT.

“I am aware that more than one thousand students who are Zulus have been to India on this programme thus far. We salute this initiative as you are helping the poorest of the poor to be educated in various skills,” Zwelithini said as he thanked Singh.

Describing Prime Minister Narendra Modi as “my brother”, the King said he was “overwhelmed” by the good gesture of the Government of India to present two tractors which are made in India.

“This historic gesture will be of service to my people in deep rural areas,” the King said.

Source: PTI

South Africa proud of its association with India: Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini