Francia Marquez’s trip to Africa: ‘It was a vicious attack’
Vice President Francia Marquez is heading a 53-person delegation that will travel Wednesday, May 10, to Africa.
Photo: EFE – RICARDO MALDONADO ROZO
In the delegation that will travel on Wednesday with Vice President Francia Marquez to Africa, there are 53 people. In addition to members of the communications and security team, translators and Minister of Culture Jorge Ignacio Zorro. Deputy Minister of Higher Education Ana Carolina Quijano; Deputy Minister of Tourism Arturo Bravo. The delegation also consists of the Director of the Agency for Presidential Cooperation (APC Colombia), the Director of Trade Relations of the Ministry of Commerce, the Responsible for Energy Transmission in the Ministry of Mines and Energy and the Director of Cultural Affairs. Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
They are joined by four members of Congress from the historic charter, delegates from the nation’s seven chambers of commerce, nine business leaders, and five social and ethnic leaders.
is reading: Vice President Francia Marquez begins her journey to Africa
“The High Representative departs with the commitment to obtain tangible results that strengthen Colombia’s relations with these three African countries and open the doors to new opportunities with the 55 countries of the continent, as well as with the African Union,” said the Vice-President. round.
Marquez’s agenda begins in South Africa, according to the details he gave in an interview with Radio Caracol. There they would be received by the Vice President of that nation, Paul Machattel. The vice president will attend a protocol ceremony at Freedom Park in the capital, Pretoria, where he will be presented with a gift of flowers. According to Marques, “there is a very good chance” that he will also meet South African President Cyril Ramaphosa.
In that country, the Vice-President will inaugurate an economic forum to enhance trade relations and will hold a meeting with the African Union Cooperation Agency, with the aim of promoting the South-South Cooperation Plan. He will also hold a meeting at the African Parliament and a meeting at the Apartheid Museum, along with academics and social leaders from his entourage.
From there it will continue to Kenya, where the delegation will be received by President William Ruto. Regarding his visit to that country, he asserted, “They wanted to discredit this trip as a safari, but for Kenya, safari is its national pride and identity; their economy revolves around safari.”
As he explained, it will be possible from that nation to learn community and ecotourism practices in Colombian territories such as the Pacific Ocean and the Amazon, where they want to promote an ecologically sustainable economy. An agreement will also be concluded with Kenya regarding a gender approach to promote the cause ‘here and there’.
There will also be a meeting with the United Nations Environment Programme, which is headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya. There will be a joint press conference with the Vice-President of that country, a business forum and a working lunch with the ambassadors of the countries in which Colombia participates: Ethiopia, Somalia, South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Brazzaville, Rwanda, Uganda, Burundi. Tanzania, Senegal, Angola, South Africa, the Sahrawi Arab Republic, Algeria and Nigeria.
The visit will culminate in Ethiopia, where they will be greeted by President Sahleworks Zewde, the country’s first and only female current head of state in Africa. There will be a high-level dialogue with the government. The Vice President announced that the intention is to open an embassy in Ethiopia.
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For Marquez, the wave of criticism this trip has received, especially from the opposition, is due to a “vicious attack”. He said this because, for example, he had traveled on previous occasions to Germany or the United States, “and they never looked at how much I spent.” On the other hand, for this mission, a controversy arose about the cost of the fuel needed for the transfers ($1.6 billion). The problem is that it is Africa.
According to him, what still prevails is a “colonial vision” of Africa that does not allow us to see beyond, and this is also related to what Africa was like in the sixteenth century. I insist that it is necessary for this government to look at Africa, because Colombia has looked at the United States, Europe and Asia, but not this continent. “Colombia should be associated with the whole world, and Africa is part of the world.”
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