Cape Verde's Jorge Carlos Fonseca was sworn in as the new president Friday of the island nation, a bastion of democracy and economic stability in west Africa.
Fonseca, a former foreign minister and the main opposition Movement for Democracy candidate, takes over from Pedro Pires who held the presidency for a decade and oversaw an economic and infrastructure boom in the former Portuguese colony.
Pires leaves power after serving two five-year terms.
"We can say that our country has overcome poverty when there is no poor Cape Verdean in the country and we are able to provide work for those who want to work," Fonseca, 60, said at his inauguration ceremony in Praia.
The island country keeps afloat through tourism and the service industry despite meagre natural resources and water shortages, and unemployment of up to 18 percent is one of the reasons more citizens live abroad than at home.
Fonseca said he was prepared for challenges such as "unemployment, poverty, insecurity, energy problems, state debt."
Addressing the National Assembly, he reiterated his campaign promise to be a "president of the people" and said he would be responsive to all levels of society and meet regularly with the populace.
Fonseca is the fourth president since Cape Verde achieved independence in 1975.
Source: AFP Global Edition