Patrice Talon was inaugurated this Sunday, May 23, 2021 for a new five-year term at the head of Benin. The ceremony took place at the Charles de Gaulle stadium in Porto-Novo, the political capital of this West African country.
The President of Benin, Patrice Talon, re-elected in the first round of the election of April 11, 2021 with more than 86% of the vote, was invested in the morning of this Sunday for a new five-year term. It was during a very sober ceremony that no foreign delegation was present. Only members of the diplomatic corps accredited to Benin, presidents and members of the various institutions of the Republic, members of the government and the public were invited to the ceremony.
After taking the oath in accordance with the Constitution, Patrice Talon delivered his first speech to his compatriots.
« Ultimate mandate
From the first words of his speech, Patrice Talon was keen to remove any doubt or ambiguity about his future intentions. « This ultimate mandate, I measure all the scope and legitimate expectations that it evokes in the minds of each Beninese, » said the President who succeeds himself. With these words, the Beninese Head of State remains faithful to the line he had already defined during the exclusive interview he gave to France 24 and RFI a few days after his re-election by stating that he had no intention of seeking a third term.
« Consolidating our march towards progress
The speech presented today by President Patrice Talon serves as an announcement of the main lines of action to be taken during the new term. From this point of view, the previous five-year term was a test. « Now, it is a matter for us, during the next five years, to transform the trial constituted by the progress, or even – I dare say – the feats that we have achieved together. Transforming the trial means going as far as possible on the path of development, » the Head of State insisted.
Patrice Talon proposes ways and means to achieve this: « To do this, we must all believe in our community of destiny and work in a much more harmonious way. Because, considering what we manage to do despite our differences, we must convince ourselves that by being more united, we will manage to do much more.
« Henceforth, our challenge, our leitmotiv, must be to put aside our quarrels to devote ourselves to the essential: to consolidate our march towards progress by remaining mobilised and united in our fight against poverty, our real and only enemy, » continued Benin’s leading citizen.
The actions envisaged aim, among other things, to make drinking water available throughout the national territory by the end of 2023. For President Patrice Talon, this is not a demagogic promise, as he justifies: « If we were able to increase the overall rate of service from 45 to 70% during the past five years, there is no doubt that we will be able to achieve this objective together.
Energy autonomy is also part of the results expected by Patrice Talon within 30 months. This is not a dream either, given that in five years, Benin’s energy production level has gone from almost zero to 60%, in the words of the Head of State.
The Beninese President also promises to link all 77 communes of Benin by asphalt roads. Agriculture, industry, education, health, tourism, no sector will be left behind, all this in an environment marked by the fight against corruption and impunity at all levels.
At the end of all these actions, there will be the creation of wealth and jobs for the well-being of everyone, « in particular, the most vulnerable among us, » added Patrice Talon.
A « highly social mandate
Strongly criticized during his first five years on the lack of attention he pays to social issues in his action, Patrice Talon announced that this new mandate will be « highly social ». He continued: « My personal wish is that at the end of my mandate, it will be established that I have given the best of myself for our common satisfaction and that I truly deserve to be called « Agbon Non » – a nickname meaning « holder of power, strength » that Beninese had given to Patrice Talon in 2016, because of his financial power, editor’s note -« .
A commitment to freedom, democracy and good governance
Patrice Talon pledges to work for the defence of three cardinal values according to him: freedom, democracy and good governance. « Our common commitment will be to work to consolidate democracy and freedoms, and then to establish good governance in the long term, as a guarantee for the achievement of all our ambitions, » the President said, before asking: « So, shouldn’t our other motto be freedom, democracy and good governance? «
« I will be the President of all Beninese ».
Referring to the tense situation that preceded the elections and which continues to be felt in the country, Patrice Talon said: « I will be the President of all Beninese. The elections and the misunderstandings or quarrels they generate are now a thing of the past.
Would the head of the Beninese Executive finally pardon the many opposition leaders who are under arrest because of the pre-election violence recorded in the country? Patrice Talon has not yet said so. For the time being, he has limited himself to addressing an invitation to his compatriots: « In cohesion, all together, let us get to work to definitively consecrate the recovery of the great nation that we are, the pride of the great people that we have always been.