‘The People Have Spoken’, Says Newly Inaugurated Ramaphosa

President Cyril Ramaphosa takes his oath of office at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, South Africa. Photo: Parliament of RSA

African National Congress (ANC) President Cyril Ramaphosa has been inaugurated as head of the Republic of South Africa, which enables him to officially kick-off his second term at the helm of the nation.

Ramaphosa took his oath of office at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, Gauteng, witnessed by South Africans from all walks of life, as well as dignitaries from various countries across the continent and beyond.

The event marked a significant milestone in the country’s democracy following the elections on May 29, 2024, where no single party received a full mandate to govern alone, forcing the ANC to propose a broader coalition of political parties termed the government of national unity (GNU).

“We rededicate ourselves to the task of democratic renewal and social and economic transformation so that no one is left behind. And so, as we enter another era in the life of our nation, the resilience of our democracy has once more been tested and the people have spoken loudly that they choose peace and democracy over violent, undemocratic and unconstitutional methods.

“In their multitude, in voices that are many and diverse, the people of South Africa have voted and made known their wishes, their concerns and their expectations. We accept and respect the results of the elections and we once again say the people have spoken. Their will shall be done without any doubt or question,” said Ramaphosa.

Hinting at the implementation of the incoming GNU, Ramaphosa emphasized the importance of the Freedom Charter, which articulates the belief that South Africa belongs to all its citizens.

He acknowledged the challenges faced by the nation, including ongoing inequalities and hardships, and expressed his determination to heal the divisions of the past and build a united, free, just, equal, and prosperous nation.

“The voters of South Africa did not give any single party the full mandate to govern our country alone. They have directed us to work together to address their plight and realise their aspirations. They have expressed their appreciation of the progress in many areas of their lives over the past 30 years of democracy. They have also been unequivocal in expressing their disappointment and disapproval of our performance in some of the areas in which we have failed them. The people have been clear about what they want.

President Cyril Ramaphosa with the First Lady, Dr. Tshepo Motsepe at the Union Buildings in Pretoria. Photo: Parliament of RSA

“They want a South Africa in which all may find shelter in our democratic Constitution and may find protection in our courts. They have described a country in which all may rise above the circumstances of their birth, nurtured by loving families, aided by a caring state and empowered by initiative, will and hard work. Through their votes they have made clear that they want the basic necessities of a life that is comfortable, happy, healthy and secure. Through their votes they asserted that they want enough food to eat. Water that is clean. Affordable electricity that is available at all times,” he said.

Ramaphosa further called for an end to political bickering and a focus on the needs and aspirations of the country. Earlier, Chief Justice Raymond Zondo administered Ramaphosa’s oath of office in front of dignitaries including presidents, heads of state and representatives of several countries mainly from the African continent. An estimated 20 000 people watched the ceremony on big screens from the lawns of the. Union Building. Last week, the ANC announced it would enter into a government of national unity (GNU) with selected opposition parties. This included the market friendly Democratic Alliance, the IFP, and the Patriotic Alliance.



Related Articles

African Times