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Mnangagwa sworn in as Zimbabwe president

China Daily | Updated: 2017-11-25 07:12

Mugabe successor says nation wants peace, prosperity

Mnangagwa sworn in as Zimbabwe president

Emmerson Mnangagwa (center) is sworn in as Zimbabwe president in Harare on Friday. BEN CURTIS/ASSOCIATED PRESS

HARARE, Zimbabwe - Emmerson Mnangagwa, 75, was on Friday sworn in as the second president of the country at a colorful ceremony attended by thousands of Zimbabweans and foreign dignitaries.

He replaced former president Robert Mugabe, whose resignation on Tuesday after military and public pressure put an end to his 37-year stay in power.

Mnangagwa became Zimbabwe's second president since the nation attained independence from the United Kingdom in 1980.

Taking his oath of office before Chief Justice Luke Malaba, Mnangagwa pledged to uphold and defend the Constitution and the rights of Zimbabweans.

"I will promote whatever that will advance and oppose whatever that will harm Zimbabwe. I swear that I will protect and promote the rights of the people of Zimbabwe," he said.

The Commander of the Zimbabwe Defense Forces Constantino Chiwenga on Friday pledged allegiance to the new president.

The inauguration at the National Sports Stadium in Harare was graced by dignitaries including Zambian President Edgar Lungu, Botswana President Ian Khama, Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi and Namibia Vice-President Nickey Iyambo.

Zimbabwe's opposition leaders also attended the event.

In South African capital Pretoria, President Jacob Zuma congratulated Mnangagwa as he was sworn in as Zimbabwean leader on Friday and said he hoped Mnangagwa would steer his country successfully through the transition.

Mnangagwa returned to Harare on Wednesday and made his first public appearance at the headquarters of the ruling ZANU-PF party after being sacked by Mugabe on Nov 6.

He appealed to Zimbabweans to be united as the country works to revive its economy.

"We want peace in our country. We want jobs for our people," he said.

However, he will have to turn words into action as the country grapples with high unemployment, rising prices of basic commodities, cash shortages and a general sense of helplessness.

The international community, meanwhile, urged all parties in Zimbabwe to maintain political stability and development.

Chairman of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat said the AU "looks forward to Zimbabwe continuing to play a leading role in the affairs of the African continent, as a democratic and prosperous state meeting the aspirations of its people".

According to the official Herald newspaper reported on Friday, Mnangagwa had vowed to guarantee the safety of Mugabe and his family in Zimbabwe.

"He (Mnangagwa) also assured the (former) first family not just of their own security and welfare, but the preservation of law and order throughout the country," the newspaper quoted Mugabe's outgoing spokesman George Charamba as saying.


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