Chinese special envoy commends Mnangagwa

Zimbabwe president says he looks forward to attending FOCAC

HARARE, Zimbabwe – Chinese President Xi Jinping's special envoy Su Hui met with Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa on Sunday, extending Xi's cordial greetings and congratulations on Mnangagwa's election as the new president.

On Sunday, Mnangagwa was sworn in for his first five-year term as the President of Zimbabwe by Chief Justice Luke Malaba.

Su, also vice-chairwoman of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, said the successful holding of the elections reflected the common desire and choice of the Zimbabwean people.

She expressed her best wishes for Zimbabwe's greater achievements in economic and social development under the new president's leadership.

Su added that China welcomes President Mnangagwa's participation in the upcoming Beijing Summit of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (known as FOCAC) and his contribution to the success of the summit, which is to bring the China-Africa and China-Zimbabwe comprehensive strategic partnership of cooperation to a higher level.

In response, Mnangagwa thanked Xi for sending a special envoy to attend the inauguration ceremony, asking Su to pass on his sincere greetings and best wishes to Xi.

Referring to economic development as the most pressing task domestically, Mnangagwa vowed to promote the country's opening-up policy to attract foreign investment, and welcomed entrepreneurs from around the world, including China, to invest in his country.

'All-weather friends'

Mnangagwa said the two countries are "all-weather" friends and their bilateral relationship has now been upgraded to a comprehensive strategic partnership of cooperation and will embrace good opportunities in various fields of collaboration.

The president said he has been looking forward to attending the FOCAC Beijing Summit and meeting with Xi to discuss Africa-China and Zimbabwe-China cooperation, and wished the summit a complete success.

The inauguration ceremony, held at the National Sports Stadium in the capital Harare, was marked by pomp and fanfare as well as some military displays.

In his speech, Mnangagwa stressed his government's unwavering commitment to constitutionalism, entrenchment of the rule of law, the principle of separation of powers and the independence of the judiciary.

He said his government will accelerate re-engagement with the international community as well as implementation of polices that boost economic growth.

"Now that the elections are behind us, we must now focus on addressing economic challenges that we face as a nation. It is time for us all to unite as a nation and grow our economy," Mnangagwa said.

He said his government will for the next five years work on scaling up industrialization and modernization of the country's economy to ensure Zimbabwe achieves its vision of becoming a middle income country by 2030.

"The creation of jobs and more jobs will be at the core of our policies. The vision of the Zimbabwe we want is a shared one and transcends political party lines. As your president, I pledge to act fairly, impartially and without fear or favor," Mnangagwa said.

He reiterated that his government will have a zero tolerance to corruption and that his government will work tirelessly to improve the quality of life of all Zimbabweans.

Former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe congratulated Mnangagwa on his inauguration as the President of Zimbabwe.

Mnangagwa succeeded Mugabe after he resigned in November following a military intervention which ended his 37 years in power.

Mugabe extended the congratulations in a letter read out by Mnangagwa. In the letter, Mugabe said he and his wife Grace were unable to attend the inauguration ceremony despite being invited because they were not feeling well.