In what is being hailed as the “first democratic transition of power” in history of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani was on Monday sworn-in as the new President at a ceremony in Kabul’s Presidential palace, exactly a week after he signed a power sharing deal with rival candidate Abdullah Abdullah, ending the months-old stand-off over the election results dispute.
Ghani marks a new era in Afghanistan as Hamid Karzai’s 13-year rule comes to an end, as does the war waged by the US-led NATO troops since Taliban’s ouster in 2001.
Taking an oath administered by the chief justice, Ghani said, “I will abide by the constitution and other laws and protect their implementation.”
In his first address as the President, Ghani chose to quote Islam’s first caliph, Abu Bakr Seddiq, saying, “I am your leader, but I am no better than you”.
In what was hinted at NATO’s withdrawal from the country, Ghani said, “we are tired of wars. We want peace.”
Ghani’s remarks have set the tone for his presidency as in what is being seen as one of the boldest statements, he said Afghanistan did not need “any lessons from foreign fighters about jihad”, BBC reporter David Loyn tweeted.
On Twitter, Ghani thanked all Afghans after taking oath as the President.
Technocrat Ghani succeeds Hamid Karzai at a time when the US-led troops are set to withdraw by the end of this year, ending the thirteen years of war against insurgency, leaving the huge onus of country’s security on Afghan forces, even as Taliban is trying its best to rear its ugly head again, by attempting attacks.