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Guebuza hopes to boost Mozambique's economy

Published Feb 2, 2005


Maputo - Armando Guebuza was sworn in on Wednesday as Mozambique's third post-colonial president, replacing Joaquim Chissano who held office for 18 years.

The wealthy businessman, who has also served as interior minister of the south-east African country, won the national elections in December as the ruling Frelimo party candidate and Chissano's handpicked successor.

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Leaders and dignitaries from Africa, Asia and Latin America were among the estimated 5 000 people who looked on as Guebuza took his oath of office at a ceremony on Maputo's Independence Square.

Guebuza has indicated he will keep the economy of the former Portuguese territory, growing at a rate of 10 percent a year in recent years, on track.

The 61-year-old returned to politics about five years ago having served as a cabinet minister and senior Frelimo official since independence in 1975.

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Mozambique's main opposition party Renamo protested the outcome of the December parliamentary and presidential elections citing irregularities.

But on Monday, the party under Afonso Dhlakama - Guebuza's main challenger during the poll - joined the new 250-seat parliament in which it holds 90 seats. - Sapa-dpa

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