ANC chairperson Baleka Mbete was elected Speaker during the the first sitting of South Africa's fifth democratic Parliament in Cape Town on Wednesday. This followed the swearing in of 400 new Members of Parliament, representing 13 political parties.
The African National Congress has been declared the winner of South Africa's 2014 general election, after securing 62.1% of the national vote. The Democratic Alliance increased its support nationally to 22.2%, while newcomers the Economic Freedom Fighters won 6.3% of the vote.
The government has thanked South Africans for making the country's fifth democratic elections a success. "As we move forward, we need to inculcate the culture of activism and tolerance displayed during the elections into the daily life of our country," says government spokesperson Phumla Williams.
The African Union's observer mission has declared South Africa's 2014 general elections as free, fair, transparent and credible. The mission's head, former Ghanaian president John Kufuor, said on Friday that South Africa had "set the bar high" for other countries with upcoming elections in Africa.
Democracy was the big winner in South Africa's fifth free elections on Wednesday as people turned out in huge numbers, especially in the country's urban areas, to vote in a poll that, with few exceptions, went off peacefully and efficiently.
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