24 JUNE 2019




Your Excellency Madam Nathalie Ndongo-Seh, UN Resident Co-ordinator

Heads and representatives of UN Agencies in Eswatini  

Lead facilitator

Course participants

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I welcome very familiar faces from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as our friends and partners from key stakeholder agencies, to this seminal training on diplomacy and protocol. As the first of its kind offered in collaboration with the UN Office in Eswatini, I am delighted to say a few words in recognition of its importance as the first iteration of what I anticipate will yield longer term partnership dividends for the facilitators and participants alike.

I wish to extend unreserved gratitude to the United Nations Office in Eswatini for honouring the request of the Ministry and committing to follow through on initial arrangements made by a previous administration. This commendable initiative further reinforces the partnership we have effortlessly forged with UN agencies resident in the country, and speaks both to the ease of engagement, as well as the flexibility and ability of the United Nations to meet country members at their place of need and demand.

I particularly wish to warmly welcome and thank the lead facilitators, Ms Nicole….. and Mr……… for prioritising the training request made by the Kingdom and customizing the delivery of the programme to be of high and practical impact. I am confident that at the end of these three days of intensive and interactive engagement, participants will not only have a clear and crisp grasp of standard international practice, but also, that our facilitators will better understand the nuances of Eswatini culture that accentuate our relations with the rest of the world.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International cooperation is more than just the mirror of the Kingdom to the rest of the world, it is also the venerable office of His Majesty, and as such, must absolutely and at all times, display attributes of international professionalism, respect, and hospitality.

The protocol department is, by necessity, the face of the Ministry in engaging with foreign partners. Whether as a receiving or sending state, its efficiency, agility, adaptability and formidability are the benchmarks by which our Sovereign reinforces our international pedigree and raises the global profile of the Kingdom.

As a nation looking to re-position ourselves as an honest broker and active interlocutor in the affairs of Africa, we have committed to promoting the country as a regional and continental hub for meetings of negotiation and decision making fora, at the very highest level, - all of which dictates that the country has a fine precisioned, effective and efficient logistics and protocol machinery.

Once again, and in closing, I wish to express my heartfelt gratitude to the UN office in Eswatini, under the able leadership of Her Excellency, Ms Ndongo-Seh, for the visionary and generational approach she has taken in, firstly, engaging and seeking to empower a local training partner in IDM, and also in focusing the ambit of the training to matters related specifically to protocol, with a clear commitment to facilitate future training on the more substantive aspects of diplomacy which will require different skill sets and expertise.      

I wish you all a most productive and fruitful training session and encourage each of you to take full advantage of the wealth of knowledge and practical expertise that has been put at your disposal.

I thank you!


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