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Blantyre twins with Norfolk City

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The twinning of Blantyre City with Norfolk City received a boost when the State of Nebraska Legislature on Monday endorsed the relationship with a promise to develop opportunities for their colleges to continue educating Malawians.

In its Legislative Resolution 105, senators recognised Dr Joe Mtika, a Malawian based in USA, as the pioneer of the establishment of sister city relationship between the two cities which was signed on Tuesday in Norfolk City, Nebraska, USA.

Reads the resolution in part: “Now, therefore, be it resolved by the members of the Zone Hundred Fifth a Legislature of Nebraska, First Session that Nebraska hopes to develop further opportunities for the City of Norfolk and Northeast Community College for the continued education of the students in Malawi.”

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It further says: “The Legislature expresses its commitment and optimism in maintaining and strengthening the relationship between Nebreska and Malawi through the Norfolk Private Schools-Malawi and its efforts.”

On his part, Blantyre City Mayor Wild Ndipo said bilateral relationships would motivate his city to do more to uplift the living standards of the residents by learning from the experience of Norfolk City especially in urban food security.

“We are willing to learn from your experience,” Ndipo said.

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“We will need your support in a number of areas, more importantly, we would want partnerships between our business persons.”

“Now is the moment to build the solid foundations. We have to develop plans to achieve those goals. Let us have plans to make Blantyre and Norfolk successful cities. We want to create robust arrangements so that the friendship is mutually beneficial,” he said.

Malawi Ambassador to America Edward Sawerengera, who represented the Malawi Government at the signing ceremony, said the two cities shared a number of areas in common such as farming.

“Blantyre City couldn’t choose a better partner than Norfolk City because Malawi has an agro-based economy which is the same with Norfolk City and definitely, not only Blantyre, but Malawi as a whole stand to benefit especially from the commercial farming expertise,” Sawerengera said.

Signing on behalf of Norfolk City, Mayor Josh Moenning assured Blantyre City that the newly established cooperation would remain a working partnership and not a a mere protocol arrangement.

“It is in the best interest of Norfolk and its citizens to identify common tyre for the purposes of promoting international cooperation and unity,” Moenning said.

Mtika, who owns Norfolk Private Schools in Blantyre, said he decided to connect the two cities as a way of paying back to his native home.

Before the signing, Ndipo and Sawerengera had audiences with Senator Jim Scheer, Speaker of Nebraska Legislature, Governor of Nebraska State Pete Rickets before meeting Congressman Jeff Fortenberry.

The Mayor and the Ambassador also toured Lindsay Corporation, an irrigation equipment manufacturing company whose vice president Gregory Oswald promised to visit Malawi this year.

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