Egypt and South Africa share a long history and a common vision

23 July 2020

Statement of H.E. Ambassador Sherif Issa, Ambassador of the Arab Republic of Egypt in Pretoria on the occasion of the 68th anniversary of the Egyptian Revolution of the 23rd of July, 1952

Your Excellencies esteemed friends in the South African government and institutions, and dear members of the Diplomatic Corps;

Virtual warm greetings to you all, on a chilly winter day.

Photo: Mr Sherif Issa, Ambassador of Egypt and his spouse Ms. Dina Zeidan pictured at the 2019 celebration

I trust that you, your families and loved ones, are safe. And I hope that you have been spared the vicious effects of the Covid-19 Pandemic.

This year has been challenging on many fronts and in many ways. For some, more than others.

Our thoughts and prayers are with them.

We salute all the brave souls who have been on the front line of the pandemic. From Cairo to Cape Town. Across our African continent; and all over the globe.

Hats off to you.

Ladies and Gentlemen;

Allow me to also pay tribute to the men and women of Egypt who, 68 years ago, on the 23rd of July 1952, courageously led a Revolution that transformed Egypt’s realities.  

A Revolution that altered Egypt’s political, economic and social landscape.

This year has been tough, but today we take a respite to celebrate this transformative event of our modern history.  

The 1952 Revolution was also a turning point in Africa’s long road to freedom.

It initiated Egyptian led liberation movements across the continent.

Egypt provided them with extensive military and political support and Cairo became home to many African leaders fighting imperialism from exile.

It was a time of great African leadership.

President Nasser in Egypt.

An exceptional leader who masterminded the 1952 Revolution.

An iconic figure whose influence spanned the Arab and African worlds, and beyond.   

And of course President Mandela in South Africa.

A legend in all the meaning of the word.

Madiba’s birthday a few days ago was an opportune occasion to celebrate his unique journey.

Many other African leaders provided inspiration and guidance to their people.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Egypt and South Africa share a long history and a common vision.

We are both are committed to achieving prosperity and dignity to our citizens and to all African people.

We are both dedicated to the goals of peace, security and development in the continent.

We are both keen on strengthening bilateral relations on all levels, for the good of our people.

Egypt proudly handed over the baton of the Chairship of the African Union to South Africa at the beginning of this year; and we have been working closely to help the continent grow and flourish, peacefully and securely.

We will continue to exert all possible efforts to support Africa achieve the goals it set itself in its 2063 Agenda so that the continent finally takes its rightful place on the global stage.

May the remainder of 2020 be kinder to all of us.

Thank you for your attention.