NICOSIA - Nicos Anastasiades was proclaimed seventh president of the Republic of Cyprus in a euphoric ceremony at the Eleftheria Stadium in Nicosia.
The announcement was made by the returning officer Andreas Assiotis.
Thousands of supporters waved Greek and Cypriot flags as he acknowledged the cheers of the crowds and shook hands with well-wishers.
He promised to use all his strength to serve the best interests of the country.
Anastasiades said he was committed, before the whole people, to act as President of all Cypriots, without prejudices, without separations, without discrimination or bias.
"Last Sunday, the sovereign people gave us an impressive lead. Today they gave us a proud victory. Last Sunday, the sovereign people gave us confidence. Today, we have mandated power. I accept this mandate and undertake the responsibility on my shoulders” he told the crowd
Earlier he said that the biggest challenge at this moment is to set the economy on the path of stabilization and growth.
He also said his priorities include the restoration of public confidence in politicians with radical institutional changes, the modernisation of the state, and the restoration of meritocracy to the maximum degree.
In a statement during a press conference for the local and foreign media, President elect Anastasiades said that “today the people of Cyprus granted us the mandate to govern the country for the next five years. I accept this popular mandate and undertake the responsibility it entails”.
He thanked all citizens, “irrespective of whether they honoured us with their vote or chose differently” and expressed appreciation to all fellow candidates for their constructive participation in putting forward political arguments “in a smooth and democratic electoral process”.
“The elections are over”, Anastasiades said, acknowledging that “the problems, however, are far from over and neither are the difficulties faced by the people and the country alike. We have challenges ahead. The problems we face are neither partisan nor ideological. The challenges and the problems we face affect all of us. That is precisely why we must all focus on dealing and resolving them”.
The president-elect said “I want to underline that these elections have neither winners nor losers. If there is a losing party, that should be pessimism and frustration. In this respect, the winning party should most definitely be hope and positive prospects”.
“As President-elect of the Republic of Cyprus, I pledge before all Cypriots, to devote all my efforts to serving the best interests of our country that continues to be tested.
I pledge to act and behave as President of all Cypriots, irrespective of ideological or partisan affiliation. My priorities include the restoration of public confidence in politicians with radical institutional changes, the modernization of the state, and the restoration of meritocracy to the maximum degree”, he stressed.
Anastasiades emphasised that the “the biggest challenge at this moment is for our economy to be set on the path of stabilization and growth”.
“We intend to discuss and cooperate in a reliable manner with our European partners so as to achieve the earliest possible completion of the MoU agreement in a manner that safeguards vulnerable groups, social cohesion and peaceful labour relations,” he added.
Anastasiades said “we will implement an ambitious programme of structural changes and reforms both in the state and in our economy. When facing great challenges, we want Europe by our side. On our part, we intend to be absolutely consistent and honour all our obligations”.
Cyprus, the President-elect remarked, “belongs in Europe. We will restore our credibility in the European and international arena. One of our first acts will be to submit our application for membership to the Partnership for Peace”.
On another note, he said “our foreign policy shall be extrovert and we will seek constructive cooperation with all states”.
Our cooperation with Greece, on all levels, he continued, “will once again become a top political priority”.
In relation to the Cyprus issue, Anastasiades said “the cornerstone of our efforts will, from now on, be based on a collective approach and unity”.
He appealed to “our Turkish Cypriot compatriots, and send a message of peace, friendship and sincere intention to seek a solution that will lead to a modern and European homeland that will respect that human rights of all its citizens and shall create the potential for progress, prosperity and the wellbeing of all citizens of the Republic of Cyprus”.
In this effort, he noted, “I am certain that we will have the active support of the European Union and of all other friendly countries, which sincer
ely wish to bring this unacceptable situation, by both European and international standards, to an end”.
Stressing that “today marks a new era for Cyprus”, Anastasiades invited “all political forces and citizens alike to a new and promising path characterized by unity and togetherness, and above all, faith in a better future for our country, through a national unity government. We will fight this battle united and united we shall win”.
In this course, as President of the Republic of Cyprus, I have the responsibility to avail and exhaust all my efforts, he concluded.