Chifamba HARARE (Xinhua) -- Zimbabwean President
Emmerson Mnangagwa was on Monday enjoying his first day in
office after being inaugurated as president amid humongous task
to fix a broken economy.
The July 30 election also saw him
gaining more political legitimacy as his first leg as president,
finishing off former president Robert Mugabe’s term, had somehow
been controversial coming as it did through a military
He took over from Mugabe in Nov. 2017
before winning an election, in which he garnered 50.67 percent
of the vote.
He appears eager to put the elections
behind him so as to focus on growing the economy which has been
shrinking over the years, weighed down to a large extent by
economic sanctions imposed by some Western powers over
“My government will in the next five
years accelerate industrialization, modernization and
mechanization, with greater emphasis on market-driven policies.
Furthermore, comprehensive strategies will be put in place to
stimulate the value chains across our industries and commerce,”
he said soon after being inaugurated.
African leaders including Cyril
Ramaphosa of South Africa, Edgar Lungu of Zambia, Mokgweetsi
Masisi of Botswana and African Union chairperson and President
of Rwanda Paul Kagame attended the inauguration ceremony.
Mnangagwa is now expected to announce
a new cabinet that will help him realize his vision to turn
around the economy, fight bureaucracy and improve the ease of
doing business, exterminate endemic corruption, create jobs and
foster unity among Zimbabweans.
He also wants Zimbabwe to be an
accepted member of the international community, pledging to
uphold democracy and the rule of law.
“Through the engagement and
re-engagement policy, we are opening a new chapter in our
relations with the world, underpinned by mutual respect, shared
principles and common values,” he said.
Zimbabweans continue to yearn for a
better livelihood after enduring years of economic hardships
exacerbated lately by cash shortages, joblessness, limited
health facilities and access to water, inadequate housing, and
the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
Harare resident Farai Tsopotsa said
although he had not voted for Mnangagwa, he expected him to
listen to the needs of all the people regardless of their
“The contest is over. He won the
election and is now my president. So I expect him to uphold the
constitution and lead the nation without fear or favor,” he
Political commentator Tichaona
Muchapera said: “After reading his pledge, which puts the
economy first, l believe it’s a good departure from the old,
when politics took centre stage at the expense of the economy.
His commitment to his own pledge would be tested by the Cabinet
he is going to appoint.”
Mnangagwa also assumes office when
there is a subtle nudge by some players in the international
community for inclusivity in governance issues.
Soon after the Constitutional Court
dismissed opposition leader Nelson Chamisa’s challenge to
Mnangagwa’s victory on Aug. 24, the European Union delegation
and heads of mission of EU member states in Harare issued a
statement calling for an inclusive approach to crafting reforms.
“The electoral process revealed
improvements as well as challenges ... It is important that the
new government engages all stakeholders in substantive
discussions on the necessary reforms, including on further
electoral reforms,” they said.