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By BRIAN KAYAYA

BRAZILIAN President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva says the manner in which Zambia’s October 30 election was conducted has renewed both regional and international confidence in the country’s future.

President da Silva expressed confidence that under President Banda’s guidance, Zambia would successfully achieve the goals of peace, stability and prosperity.
This is according to a congratulatory message addressed to Mr Banda on his election as Zambia’s fourth President.

The message was released in Lusaka yesterday by special assistant to the President for press and public relation, John Musukuma.

President da Silva said he looked forward to working with President Banda on many issues of common interest to further strengthen the good ties in the context of south-south cooperation.

Botswana President Ian Khama also commended Zambia for conducting the campaigns and elections in an atmosphere of tolerance.

“Zambia is one of the champions of democracy. The manner in which the election campaigns were conducted, in an atmosphere of political tolerance, is commendable,” General Khama said.

President Khama said he looked forward to working with Mr Banda to further strengthen the bonds of friendship, solidarity and cooperation between the two countries and to address the common challenges that face the region and the African continent.

And Nigerian President Alhaji Umaru Yar’Adua said he was encouraged by President Banda’s commitment to the fight against corruption as well as ensuring regional stability and economic development.

President Yar’Adua said the task ahead of Mr Banda was enormous but expressed confidence that with courage and perseverance, he would be able to overcome all challenges and deliver the dividends of democracy and good governance to Zambians.

“I wish to congratulate you most sincerely on your election to the exalted office of President of your dear country. Your election is no doubt a reaffirmation of the confidence reposed in your ability to lead the good people of Zambia and take your country to greater heights,” Mr Yar’Adua said.

He said he looked forward to working closely with President Banda in the overall mutual interest of the two nations and Africa as a whole.

Mr Yar’ Adua commended Mr Banda’s desire to govern a united and prosperous Zambia.

Finland President Tarja Halonen wished Mr Banda success in carrying out the important responsibilities of the high office.

Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba reaffirmed his government’s commitment to further strengthen and consolidate the excellent bilateral relations and cooperation that exist between the two countries.

Lesotho Prime Minister Pakhalita Mosisili assured Mr Banda of his unwavering support and expressed hope that the good relations between the two nations would be further strengthened.

Other congratulatory messages received are from Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, Former South African President Thabo Mbeki, COMESA Secretary General Sindiso Ngwenya, and Libyan People’s Bureau and Dean of Diplomatic Corps Khalifa Omar Swiexi.

President Banda beat other candidates to become Zambia’s fourth President.

Others in the race were Patriotic Front president, Michael Sata, his United Party for National Development counterpart, Hakainde Hichilema and Brigadier General Godfrey Miyanda of the Heritage Party.

Source: Daily Mail

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