S.Africa congratulates Zambia's Sata
South Africa on Friday congratulated Zambia's news president, Michael Sata, on his election victory, saying the peaceful change of power bodes well for democracy on the continent.
The foreign ministry said in a statement that it noted the findings by observers who declared that the elections were free, transparent and credible.
"This bodes well for the consolidation of democratic culture on the continent and in Zambia particularly," said the statement.
"The South African government and its citizens reiterate its commitment to continue working with the government and the people of Zambia for the mutual benefit of the two countries," it said.
Sata campaigned on a pro-poor platform, defeating the incumbent Rupiah Banda in a tight election held on Tuesday.
He is now Zambia's fifth president since independence from Britain in 1964.
Zambia is South Africas fourth-largest trading partner in Africa, with a total trading volume of $2.1 billion, according to the Zambia Chamber of Commerce.
© 2011 AFP