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Ambassador Sun Xianghua's Speech on the Hand-over Ceremony of the China-Lesotho Friendship Middle School

On 19th Jan 2017, the Chinese Ambassador H.E. Dr. Sun Xianghua attended the hand-over ceremony of the China-Lesotho Friendship Middle School, on which he signed with Her Honorable Mamphono Khaketla, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lesotho the Hand-Over Certificate. Also preset at the ceremony were the Right Honorable Prime Minister Dr. Mosisili and his spouse, the Cabinet Ministers as well as guests from all fields. Ambassador Sun delivered a speech as follows:


May I start by paying my respect to H. M. King Letsie III with all protocols observed,

Your Right Honorable Prime Minister Dr. Pakalitha Mosisili,

The Honorable President of the Senate,

The Honorable Speaker of the National Assembly,

Her Ladyship the Chief Justice

Your Honorable Deputy Prime Minister Mothetjoa Metsing,

Honorable Ministers and Deputy Ministers of H.M.'s Cabinet,

Their Lordships, Judges of the High Court,

Distinguished Guests,

Friends from the media,

Compatriots and Dear Friends,


At the very beginning of this new year, we are gathered here today, to witness the Hand-Over of the China-Lesotho Friendship Middle School, from the Government of the People's Republic of China to the Government of the Kingdom of Lesotho. First of all, please allow me, on behalf of the Chinese Embassy in Lesotho and the China Shandong International Economic and Technical Cooperation Group, the contractor of this project, to extend our warmest welcome to you all.


This Friendship Middle School is a grant project from Government of China to the Government of Lesotho, under the Framework of FOCAC, the Forum of China-Africa Cooperation. After more than one year's hard work, and also after the recent inspection and check-up by an independent technical team of engineers from China, as well as after the thorough evaluation by the relevant authorities of Lesotho, the School is now ready to handed over to Lesotho.


Distinguished guests, with the hand-over of this School, a new teaching facility will be added to the educational system of Lesotho, and the Lesotho government will be better equipped to implement its education strategy. Nearly 40 years ago, Mr. Deng Xiaoping, the "general architect" of China's reform and opening up policy, said: 百年大计,教育为先, which basically means, of all the hundred-year policies and strategies, education is of the fundamental importance and priority. China's development today would not have been achieved without the huge investment we put into high-quality education. Meanwhile, the Lesotho government has also categorically stipulated in all its national development plans that the education and human resource development is given "high priority". This shows that our two governments and nations share exactly the same thinking and concept on education. For this reason, our two governments joined hands and decided to build a high-quality middle school in Lesotho. This school is not just one school only, it embodies the great importance attached to education by the Lesotho government. This school does not serve a group of students only, it will call upon the whole society of Lesotho and all its international development partners to care for and contribute to Lesotho's education cause.


Dear friends, ladies and gentlemen, with the hand-over of this School, the younger generations of Basotho will have another high-quality learning facility, to prepare for their future careers and pursue their colorful dreams. The French writer Victor Hugo once said, building a school equals to demolishing a prison. Schools are where young people equip themselves with values and knowledge, schools are where our children emancipate their minds from whatever confinements they face and reflect on the meanings of a real life, schools are also where our future generations learn to become responsible and contributing members of the society they live in. It is my ardent wish and strong belief that in the not-so-far future, out of the gate of the Friendship Middle School, will emerge groups after groups of young Basotho, with moral integrity, with sound academic capability, with high caliber, with sharp minds and bright eyes focused on the bright future, not only for themselves, but also for the nation and the world.   


Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, with the hand-over of this School, the long-standing friendship and cooperation between China and Lesotho will be greatly enhanced. The Friendship Middle School, together with the Parliament Building, the Mathabiseng National Convention Center, the National Library and Archive, will stand proudly on the horizon of Lesotho, encouraging all of us to push forward ever harder this time-tested friendship. More importantly, the fact that this newest monument of China-Lesotho Friendship is being handed over to Lesotho when we are celebrating the 50th anniversary of Lesotho's independence, bears the loudest message and clearest testament that China truly shares the pride and joyfulness of this historic event just as its brotherly Basotho friends. This fact shows once again that China attaches great importance to further developing its cordial relations with Lesotho, which feature equality, sincerity and win-win cooperation. Bearing the above-said in mind, I can't help from saying that I am fully convinced that with our joint efforts and with the great impetus coming from the FOCAC, the China-Lesotho friendship will fasten its strides to continue bringing us more cooperation fruits in the coming years.


Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, it would be a remiss of me not to use opportunity to thank all the relevant Ministries of Lesotho government for their understanding, cooperation and facilitation in the construction of this august School. I would also like to thank the Technical Team from the Shandong International Economic and Technical Cooperation Group for their excellent job done. Though the Middle School Project is basically a Turn-Key project, but I still strongly suggest the Chinese Team continue to work closely with the Ministry of Education to ensure a smooth transfer of all the operation and maintenance skills and know-how within this post hand-over maintenance year, as we all know that proper and careful maintenance of a facility is as important as building it.


With that, I conclude my few words. Lastly, please allow me to say once again, on behalf of the Chinese Government, the Chinese Embassy, and the Chinese Community in Leotho,

Happy golden Jubilee to the Independence of Lesotho,

Happy birthday to the China-Lesotho Friendship Middle School,

Long live China-Lesotho friendship!

Khotso Pula Nala!

Thank you all!  



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