|July 9, 2011
Zuma hails Mbeki's role in Sudan
President Jacob Zuma has praised the role his predecessor Thabo Mbeki played in bringing an end to conflict in Sudan. "President Mbeki is a man of integrity and enormous experience," Zuma was quoted saying in a statement, issued during his visit to Sudan to attend festivities marking the birth of South Sudan. "He was part of the leadership that brought about change in South Africa, which will enable him to assist the people of the Sudan even further to find solutions." Mbeki headed the African Union's high-level implementation panel which helped ensure a peaceful solution to Sudan's conflict.
Zuma began his visit in Khartoum, to express South Africa's support to the north and to strengthen bilateral relations. South Sudan earned independence at 12.01am on Saturday. It was the outcome of a vote for independence in January, guaranteed in a 2005 peace deal which ended the most recent north-south war.