, CAPE TOWN, South Africa, May 10 – President Kenyatta on Friday met and held bilateral talks with his South African counterpart President Jacob Zuma on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum for Africa that is taking place in Cape Town, South Africa.
During the meeting, President Kenyatta thanked President Zuma, the government and people of South Africa for their solidarity with Kenya in the period to, during and after the elections.
The president also thanked President Zuma for attending his inauguration as the fourth President of Kenya, saying this was an honour to the people of Kenya.
The president noted that the gesture of goodwill was a reflection of the fraternal ties that Kenya and South Africa continue to enjoy.
On his part, President Zuma congratulated President Kenyatta on his election and commended the people of Kenya for demonstrating a high degree of political maturity that has set example on the continent.
President Zuma further hailed the strong ties between Kenya and South Africa saying he looks forward to strengthening these ties for the benefit of the people of the two countries.
President Zuma also thanked Kenya for the frontline role the country has continued to play in search for stability and durable peace in Somalia adding that Kenya’s intervention has been a game changer in Somalia.
President Zuma further added that South Africa supports the on-going IGAD peace process on Somalia.
On bilateral issues, the two leaders instructed heads of the respective foreign affairs ministries to immediately begin working on modalities that would lead to the establishment of a framework for close cooperation and regular consultations between the two countries.
During the meeting, the two leaders also reviewed the insecurity and fragile situation in other parts of Africa including Mali and Central Africa Republic.
They called on the African Union to accelerate the process that will lead to the establishment of an African standby rapid deployment force.
The leaders noted that the standby force which would be under the African Union will be useful in addressing conflict situations.