(Washington, DC) -- Mayor Vincent C. Gray and Executive Mayor Kgosientso Ramokgopa of the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality signed an extension of the two cities’ Sister City Agreement today in a ceremony at the Wilson Building.
Mayor Gray also met with Mayor Ramokgopa, his counterpart from the metropolitan jurisdiction that includes South Africa’s legislative capital (formerly known as Pretoria), and other Tshwane and South African leaders.
“The District of Columbia has long partnered with Tshwane, and I’m pleased to extend that partnership with Tshwane’s new leader, Mayor Ramokgopa,” said Mayor Gray. “I look forward to our two capital cities continuing to learn from each other’s culture and benefit from each other's commercial endeavors.”
The City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality is home to more than 2 million people. Mayor Ramokgopa recently assumed his office after being elected and is visiting the United States on a 12-day trade mission to bring jobs and commerce to the Tshwane metropolitan area. He is in Washington to meet with a number of agencies toward that goal as well as to meet Mayor Gray.
The Sister City Agreement of Friendship and Cooperation between Tshwane and the District has existed since June 28, 2002 and was extended for two years in September, 2008. The most recent extension continues the relationship for another five years and encourages cultural and educational exchanges as well as cooperation in the areas of economic development, tourism, public health, government operations, public safety and environmental innovation.