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Africa

Zuma vows to bridge gap between blacks and whites

Latest update : 2009-04-23

South Africa's ruling ANC party held its final election campaign rally before elections on Wednesday. ANC's current leader, Jacob Zuma, alongside founder Nelson Mandela, pressed for racial unity as they addressed crowds near Johannesburg.

AFP - South Africa's likely next president Jacob Zuma said Sunday that the country belonged to both blacks and whites as he stressed racial unity ahead of the fourth democratic elections.
   
"We reaffirm that South Africa belongs to all of us, black and white," the ruling ANC party leader said at a final campaign rally ahead of Wednesday's elections.
   
"Working together we will ensure that no South African ever feels they are less valued than others because of their race, culture or religion."
   
Over 100,000 supporters of the African National Congress gathered in the Ellis Park stadium in the historic Soweto township outside Johannesburg as the party proclaimed victory three days before the election.
   
Zuma attempted to unite the country after several months of divisive politics and infighting within his party over his leadership, assuring supporters the party was as popular as ever.
   
"The 2009 election is indeed a defining moment for the ANC and the country. Only a few months ago pessimistic predictions were made about the ANC..." he said, sharing a stage with ANC veterans including Nelson Mandela, fondly referred to by his clan name Madiba.
   
"We have seen excitement about the ANC that we have not witnessed since the release of our icon Madiba and the 1994 elections."
   
The ANC has suffered a loss of support as a dissident group of leaders broke away to form the Congress of the People, seen as the first significant opposition threat to the former liberation movement.
   
However the party is still expected to win with around 60 percent of the vote.
 

Date created : 2009-04-19

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