The ceremonial 21-gun salute echoed from the Union Buildings in Pretoria on Thursday as President Jacob Zuma welcomed his Zambian counterpart Edgar Lungu who is on a three-day State Visit.
A jovial Zuma laughed loudly as he introduced his Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and Cabinet ministers to Lungu.
The visiting president inspected the South African National Defence Force guard of honour before the two leaders went into a closed door meeting.
Lungu is accompanied by numerous cabinet ministers and Zambian media entities including the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation, the Daily Mail and the Zambian News and Information Services.
A statement issued by the Presidency on Wednesday said the State Visit will deepen and strengthen the “existing good political, economic and social relations underpinned by strong historical ties dating back from the years of the struggle against apartheid and colonialism”.