Global News Journal

Beyond the World news headlines

from Africa News blog:

Can Zuma live up to unity pledge?

Pledging to work for national unity is pretty much a formality for any election winner, but in the case of South Africa’s Jacob Zuma it may be more than a platitude. It may need to be.

“The new President of the Republic will be a president for all, and he will work to unite the country around a programme of action that will see an improvement in the delivery of services,” Zuma said after the African National Congress won its sweeping victory.

“We may disagree on how to bring about a better life for all, but what unites us is the fact that this country belongs to all of us, black, white, coloured and Indian equally. We will need to work together on issues that are in the national interest, on which there is no need to compete or permanently bicker.”

Despite the strongest opposition challenge since the end of apartheid, the slick ANC campaign delivered the vote and persuaded a majority of South Africans that the party that has ruled since 1994 could also be the one to deliver change – more action against poverty, crime, AIDS and other concerns.