Cyril Ramaphosa Elected South Africa New President

A day after Jacob Zuma reluctant resignation



Cyril Ramaphosa has been elected as the new president of South Africa by the National Assembly on Thursday afternoon.

Ramaphosa was nominated as a candidate by ANC backbencher Patrick Maesela, and the nomination was seconded by his colleague Joan Fubbs.

None of the opposition parties nominated a candidate.

MPs from the ruling African National Congress broke into song at the announcement.

The ANC leader was congratulated by Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng, who presided over the election.

The election comes a day after Jacob Zuma reluctantly resigned.

Speaker of Parliament Baleka Mbete said she had received Zuma’s resignation letter, while the ANC hailed Zuma’s decision to step down.

Julius Malema, leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), said his party would not take part in the election of a new president as it would not legitimise an ANC candidate.

The EFF walked out moments after Parliament had convened.

The Democratic Alliance requested an urgent debate on the dissolution of Parliament‚ which the EFF said it would support.

This debate is due to be raised next Thursday.

Ramaphosa was the deputy president to embattled Jacob Zuma.

Promises to tackle corruption

In a speech to parliament Mr Ramaphosa, 65, says that corruption was on his radar.

He thanked the lawmakers, Chief Justice, and political parties for giving him the privilege to serve the nation.

He pledges to continue interaction with parliament to continuously brief them on the programmes and action of the government and said he would continue to work with leaders of all political parties.

“I will do all these as a servant of our people. Once one is elected as president, you become a servant.

“I will seek to do that task with humility and faithfulness.”

“Many of the lawmakers have spoken about unity and how to work for our people. I will adopt and accept the advice.”

“We have to work together on how to improve the lives of our people rather than grandstanding.”

“Issue of corruption, strengthening state enterprises are issues that we will be addressing. Also issue of patriotism.

“South Africa must come first in everything that we do.”

He says that they should have the opportunity of sitting together to tackle issues affecting the country without screaming at each other.

Ramaphosa’s first state of the nation address will take place on Friday.

The ANC had told Mr Zuma to step down or face a vote of no-confidence.

In a televised statement he said he was quitting with immediate effect but said he disagreed with his party’s decision.

Mr Zuma faces numerous corruption allegations but denies any wrongdoing.

On Wednesday, police swooped on the Johannesburg home of the powerful and wealthy Gupta family.

Eight suspects appeared in court on Thursday on fraud and money laundering charges, local media report.

But they did not include any of the best-known Gupta brothers – Ajay, Atul and Rajesh.

Among the eight in court was Varun Gupta, who was Chief Operating Officer of the Gupta-owned mining firm Oakbay Resources and Energy.

He is yet to make a plea in court.

The Guptas have been accused of using their close friendship with the president to wield enormous political influence.

They deny all allegations of wrongdoing.

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