VISA MATTERS

Uhuru, Ramaphosa appoint team to address visa-related issues

The announcement was made during a joint press conference on Tuesday.

In Summary
  • On Democracy, Uhuru said South Africa should be proud of its tenets of democracy.
  • The announcement was made during a joint press conference on Tuesday.
President Uhuru Kenyatta and his counterpart Cyril Ramaphosa during a press conference.
President Uhuru Kenyatta and his counterpart Cyril Ramaphosa during a press conference.
Image: REUTERS

Presidents Uhuru Kenyatta  and Cyril Ramaphosa have announced that a presidential task force is to be appointed to address visa related issues between the two countries.

To this end, they acknowledged that the immigration departments of the two countries had finaliSed consultations on the technical requirements on immigration matters and concluded two legal instruments.

These instruments as well as the recent launch of the e-visa system will contribute towards simplifying visa processes and enable easier movement of people between the two countries.

It was decided to set up a task team at the level of the two Presidents, to look into any challenges pertaining to the visa regime and to address them with the required speed.

The announcement was made during a joint press conference on Tuesday.

On democracy, Uhuru said South Africa should be proud of its tenets of democracy.

"You should be proud of yourself since you have a mature democracy. Let us continue entrenching democracy as a way of governments.," he said.

President Uhuru Kenyatta in South Africa.
President Uhuru Kenyatta in South Africa.
Image: REUTERS

"Results are one way or the other way but the tenets of democracy are the the roots of South Africa."

Ramaphosa said their historic ties are rooted in Kenya’s principled support for the struggle for liberation and democracy.

“For this, we remain eternally grateful to the people of Kenya.  Solidarity, mutual respect and a common vision of a better Africa and a better world," he said.

On terrorism, Uhuru said terrorism can't be fought by a single country saying its a collectively work.

The two presidents Uhuru Kenyatta and Cyril Ramaphosa.
The two presidents Uhuru Kenyatta and Cyril Ramaphosa.
Image: REUTERS

"These are young people who are misled and these elements can be defeated if we work together. We need deeper cooperation," he said.

Ramaphosa affirmed Uhuru's point saying that countries need to respond in a coordinated manner to fight terrorism.

"We have found working together in our region is bearing a great deal of fruits in Mozambique and we see what's happening in Uganda," he added.

They noted that South Africa and Kenya share friendship, mutual respect, common values, and solidarity not only on issues of bilateral concern, but also on the vision for the Continent.

Both countries are proponents of Pan-Africanism and hold a common vision for the development and Renaissance of Africa as encapsulated in Agenda 2063: The Africa We Want.

On trade and investment, both leaders agreed that as partners and strong advocates of Pan-Africanism and intra-Africa trade, South Africa and Kenya ought to set the example by increasing both the volume and composition of bilateral trade as well as investing more in each other’s economies.

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta introduces his ministers to South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa during his state visit in Pretoria, South Africa, November 23, 2021. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko
Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta introduces his ministers to South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa during his state visit in Pretoria, South Africa, November 23, 2021. REUTERS/Siphiwe Sibeko

To this end, the two Presidents further acknowledged the signing of the Strategic Partnership Framework between South African Airways and Kenya Airways, which will ultimately facilitate more trade and investment and enhance people to people exchanges between the two countries and ultimately, the region and beyond.

On housing and human settlements, the two Presidents noted the transformative role the sector plays in creating a decent quality of life and achieving South African National Development Plan and Kenya’s Big Four Agenda.

They acknowledged that technical exchanges between the two countries are at an advanced stage and were encouraged by the intention to formalise the cooperation through an Agreement.

Upon conclusion, the Agreement will promote conducive frameworks for the development of affordable housing, human settlements, and urban development.

Uhuru arrived in South Africa on Monday evening at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, for a formal welcome ceremony by his host President Cyril Ramaphosa.

As part of his day's itinerary, Uhuru led the Kenyan delegation in bilateral talks with their South African counterparts.

Uhuru arrived in the Southern African nation for a three-day state visit aimed at strengthening the Kenya-South Africa bilateral relations