The South African Presidency has announced that the inauguration of the country’s president-elect will take place on May 25, which is African Day.
“It is symbolic that the inauguration will take place on Africa Day, as it affirms government’s commitment to advancing the African agenda and to strengthening ties between South Africa and its neighbors,” the Presidency said on Saturday. The theme of the inauguration ceremony is “Together celebrating 25 years of freedom: Renewal and Growth for a better South Africa,” according to the Presidency.
In a departure from the tradition of holding the inauguration at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, the event will take place at Loftus Versfeld Stadium in the city, presidential spokesperson Khusela Diko said.
Hosting the inauguration at the stadium, the largest in Pretoria, will allow for greater public participation in this important national event, Diko said. Aside from members of the public, it is expected that heads of state and royalty from a number of countries will attend, as well as religious representatives, political parties, and representatives from regional, continental and international organizations and bodies such as the Southern African Development Community, the African Union (AU) and the United Nations (UN), said Diko.
South Africa will hold general elections on May 8 to elect a new National Assembly and provincial legislatures in each province. The elections, the sixth since the end of apartheid in 1994, will determine who will become the next president. Incumbent President Cyril Ramaphosa will lead the ruling African National Congress (ANC), which is attempting to retain its majority status and secure Ramaphosa a full term in office as president. Ramaphosa took over his predecessor Jacob Zuma in February 2018 after the latter resigned from office over corruption allegations.