Zuma: We created a better life for all

2013-06-06 14:05
(Picture: AFP)

(Picture: AFP)

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Pretoria - South Africans' quality of life has improved immensely since the advent of democracy, President Jacob Zuma told foreign diplomats on Thursday.

"We have kept our promise to create a better life for all. We have changed the quality of lives of our people," he said after receiving letters of credence from incoming ambassadors and high commissioners.

The event was held at the Sefako Makgatho presidential guest house in Pretoria.

Five heads of mission, representing Kenya, Malawi, France, Saudi Arabia, and Poland, tendered documents to the president and posed for photos with him.

"We have created more employment, reduced the levels of poverty, and unemployment. But this we did not achieve alone, your excellencies. Your countries also were there every step of the way as we marched forward in search of greater opportunities for our people," Zuma said.

He thanked the international community, particularly African states, for their contribution to the struggle against apartheid.

Owing to that assistance, South Africa today was "different from what it was 20 years ago".

"Within a period of 19 years, we have managed to move from being a pariah state to a great nation with a visionary foreign policy that promotes relations with other countries," he said.

"In this regard, we have made a call to our missions abroad to strengthen efforts in pursuing strategies for our economic diplomacy engagements."

Zuma said 2013 was a year of reflection in South Africa, ahead of the next national elections.

"We are also in the middle of the penultimate year before we go to our national elections in 2014. In short, this is a year for us to reflect on the journey we have travelled since the dawn of our young democracy 19 years ago."

Zuma called for improved partnerships with the new envoys’ countries.

"Let us work together to create a better future for our people. In us, you can be assured that you have a solid partnership."

- SAPA
Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  elections 2014  |  politics
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