Cyril Ramaphosa re-instated as President of South Africa


Cyril Ramaphosa was re-instated as President of South Africa on Wednesday in Pretoria, the day after the highly contested legislative elections on May 29.

The Head of State took the oath at the seat of government, Union Building, before the President of the Constitutional Court, the highest court in the country, members of the National Assembly, as well as traditional leaders from different regions of the country .

President of the African National Congress (ANC), the party in power in South Africa since the end of apartheid, Mr. Ramaphosa was re-elected last Friday for a second five-year term at the head of the country by Parliament.

During the last election, Nelson Mandela’s party obtained only 40% of the votes cast, the lowest score ever achieved since the first multiracial elections organized in the country in 1994.

Out of a total of 400 seats in the National Assembly, the ANC obtained 159, followed by the main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA) with 21.80% of the vote (87 seats), the party newly created by Jacob Zuma, “uMkhonto weSizwe” (MK) with 14.59% (58 seats) and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) with 9.52% (39 seats).

The participation rate stood at 58.63%, down from 66% recorded during the previous election held in 2019.

Mr. Ramaphosa (71 years old) is expected to address many thorny issues, notably the revitalization of an economy which has been stuck in a spiral of slowdown for around ten years.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has revised downwards, in a new report, the country’s GDP growth forecast for 2024 to 0.9%, instead of 1.8% announced last October.

This lackluster growth in Africa’s most industrialized economy is exacerbating the unemployment crisis, leaving nearly 33% of the population jobless, a figure that rises to more than 45% among young people.

In addition, the Head of State will be called upon to strengthen the fight against corruption, a phenomenon which continues to erode public institutions, seriously damaging the country’s image, particularly with investors and foreign partners.

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