ABIDJAN: President Pranab Mukherjee was bestowed with Cote d’Ivoire’s highest national honour, the Grande Croix Commandeur in National Merit Order, from the President of Cote d’Ivoire Alassane Ouattara.
Speaking after the occasion, President Mukherjee said he was accepting it with humility on behalf of the one billion plus Indians.
In his speech at the banquet, Mr. Mukherjee who is on the second leg of his three-nation visit to Africa, said it is rightly believed that the mutual goodwill between India and Cote D’Ivoirie is inversely proportional to the geographical distance separating the two countries, longstanding friendship and fruitful co-operation has made it irrelevant.
“I feel greatly honoured, Excellency, by your gesture of conferring on me the National Order of the Republic of Cote D’Ivoirie. I consider it to be emblematic of the long standing mutual friendship between the peoples of our two countries,” he said.