Jacob Zuma has been sworn in as President of the Republic of South Africa for the second term in office.
Chief Justice, Mogoeng Mogoeng, swore in Mr Zuma during a colorful inauguration ceremony attended by several Heads of government and thousands of South Africans at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, today.
ZANIS staffer Emmanuel Banda reports that Vice President, Guy Scott, accompanied by his wife Charlotte, and First Republican President, Kenneth Kaunda, among others represented Zambia at the ceremony.
Other Heads of State and Government included Armando Guerbuza of Mozambique, Joseph Kabila of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Goodluck Jonathan of Nigeria, King Mswati of Swaziland and Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe, who attracted more applauds than others.
Speaking after taking oath, Mr. Zuma said he accepted the privilege of running the country for the next five years with humility and pledged to do so with, dedication and perform to the best of his ability.
Mr. Zuma revealed to the cheering crowd that last year’s review of the country’s economic performance proved that the country has undergone tremendous improvement and was a better place to live in than before independence in 1994.
He, however, acknowledged that poverty and unemployment still persisted, and called on stakeholders, including the corporate world and private sector, to partner with his government in an effort to improve the lives of citizens.
He also acknowledged that there were a lot of people who were still left with wounds of apartheid, but called for co-existence and unity among all citizens.
Mr. Zuma outlined his government’s economic development plan for the next five years which he said is expected to move South Africa forward to prosperity.
‘’Today marks the second phase of our plan and our vision is to ensure development of communities with decent accommodation, access to adequate safe water, education, health and recreation of our people,’’ he said.
The President, who is tomorrow expected to announce his new Cabinet, said his government would also look into issues of land restitution and distribution.
He said his new government will continue to build infrastructure, including roads, railways, schools, universities and hospitals among others, adding that by the year 2030 every South African must feel safer and more comfortable.
Mr. Zuma, however, said to achieve this dream, his government will deal with hindering elements like corruption and inefficiency in the public service.
He added that his government will always promote unity not only in the country but also among other African countries and the world at large.