Thursday, December 10, 2015 11:33 pm
Mauricio Macri was sworn in as Argentina’s president Thursday, calling for national unity and dialogue “to move Argentina forward into the 21st century.”
After taking the oath of office in Congress, Macri made an appeal to the legislative assembly and Argentinians in general for “dialogue, respect and working together.”
Addressing concerns that his conservative government may neglect underprivileged social sectors, Macri pledged to “work tirelessly over the next four years so that all Argentinians, especially those most in need, are living better at the end of this period.”
Macri won a tight presidential race in November, beating ruling party candidate Daniel Scioli by less than 3 points to succeed outgoing president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, who did not attend the ceremony.
The new president, accompanied by his wife Juliana Awada, daughter Antonia and Vice President Gabriela Michetti, was sworn in at 11:45 am local time.
During his nearly 30-minute speech, Macri acknowledged his fellow candidates in the recent elections, including Scioli and others, and said, “We are united by a democratic vocation and the dream of seeing a developed Argentina.”
“We want to take confrontation out of center stage and in its place put agreement, development and growth,” he added.
Macri said his government will have “zero tolerance” for corruption and will continue to support the country’s “independent justice” system. In both instances, he received a standing ovation, the daily Clarin reported.
The day after winning the Nov. 22 elections, Macri said one of his priorities would be to seek the suspension of Venezuela from South American bloc Mercosur, alleging the country has violated democratic principles. But on Thursday, his tone was notably more conciliatory.
“We believe in Latin American and global unity and cooperation, without prejudice or rancor, and in the strengthening of democracy as the only way to resolve the problems of a society,” said Macri.
Following the ceremony, Macri and his entourage arrived at the executive mansion and presidential headquarters Casa Rosada, where the president and his family will be residing for the next four years.
From the balcony, Macri addressed the crowd of supporters gathered at the plaza outside, saying “Today we are here to begin a wonderful stage in our country.”
An effusive Macri also thanked his supporters for their votes, and said “I love you, I love this country, for you and with you we are going to build the Argentina we want. Thank you.”