By Alice Chisanga
President Hakainde Hichilema has been sworn in as Zambia’s 7th Republican President in Lusaka today.
Mr. Hichilema and his Vice President Mutale Nalumango, who is also Zambia’s second female vice president took the oath of office before acting Chief Justice Michael Musonda in a colourful ceremony with more than 60,000 Zambian people in attendance.
Outgoing President Edgar Lungu and Vice President Inonge Wina peacefully passed on the instruments of power to the new leaders.
And Hakainde Hichilema declared that the occasion was not a transfer of power but the transfer of leadership saying power belong to the people.
In his inaugural speech, Mr. Hichilema pledged a better democracy where voices and rights of the people would be freely exercised.
He said his government would pay special attention to lowering the fiscal deficit, reducing public debt and restoring social and market confidence.
He noted that in the last decade, the country witnessed the erosion of the country’s economy, and the debt situation became unsustainable, reducing the country’s capacity to invest in productive areas of the economy that can address the gaps in healthcare, education and other social services.
He has since assured the country that the high unemployment levels especially among the youths would be regarded top priority of his agenda saying the high number of unemployment was something to be concerned about.
Mr. Hichilema said his government would aggressively promote the creation of jobs especially for our youths, women and indeed all citizens.
Meanwhile Outgoing President Edger Lungu wished the new President Hakainde Hichilema well as he takes over the next Chapter of the Country’s Leadership.
Edgar Lungu said the success of Hakainde Hichilema is the success of the nation as a whole.
He further called on Zambians to support the elected president as well as pray for him that God gives him strength on the challenging journey.
The outgoing president did not forget to thank the people of Zambia for the honour he was given to run the affairs of the country for the past six years.
The event was witnessed by heads of states from South Africa, Namibia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi and Botswana.
Also in attendance where representatives from Rwanda, Angola, The kingdom of Eswatini, Ghana, U.S.A African Union and SADC representatives.