Hundreds of dignitaries and thousands of ordinary citizens on Tuesday thronged the National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka, the Zambian capital, to witness the inauguration of the country’s new President, Hakainde Hichilema.
Many clad in red T-shirts and caps, the colour of the United Party for National Development, started gathering at the stadium as early as 4 a.m.
They started arriving early in order to secure seats even when the ceremony was scheduled to start at 11 a.m.
In his speech delivered after he was inaugurated, Hichilema said his government would strive for the benefits of all citizens.
He said his government would fix the economy and grow it in order to lift people out of poverty.
He said his government would endeavour to deliver on the promises made during the campaigns, adding that his government would endeavour to restore the rule of law and the dignity of the people.
“You have entrusted us to run the affairs of this country and we will be your servants,”he said.
The new president further thanked his predecessor for his service to the country and for the smooth and peaceful transfer of power.
He further invited the private sector to work with his government to grow the economy and political parties to work with the ruling party in unity and put political differences aside.
According to him, macroeconomic stability will be crucial as well as reducing public debt which has affected investment in other sectors of the economy.
Hichilema, who becomes Zambia’s seventh president, further said fighting corruption will be the hallmark of his administration.
He, however, said the fight against corruption will be done in a professional way by giving institutions powers to fight the vice.