Zimbabwe’s new President Emmerson Mnangagwa vowed sweeping change at his swearing in on Friday, seeking to reassure foreign investors and pledging to fight poverty and corruption after Robert Mugabe’s shock resignation.
In his inaugural address, Mnangagwa set out a program of dramatic change that promised a stark reversal of many of Mugabe’s signature policies.
He pledged that his government would compensate white farmers whose land was seized by Mugabe, protect international investments in the country, and re-engage with foreign powers.
Elections scheduled for 2018 would go ahead as planned, he said.
“I humbly appeal to all of us that we let bygones be bygones,” he said at the ceremony in the 60,000-seat national stadium in Harare, which was packed to capacity.
“We must work together — you, me, all of us who make this nation.
“I stand here today, to say that our country is ready for a sturdy re-engagement program with all the nations of the world,” he said.
After reciting the oath of office, the 75-year-old leader was given a ceremonial chain and sash of office flanked by his wife Auxilia, receiving salutes and pledges of allegiance from the country’s military and security chiefs.
Mnangagwa also used his speech to pay tribute to Mugabe, describing him as one of the “founding fathers of our nation”. (AFP)