Republic Day chief guest is South African president Cyril Ramaphosa
India says South African president Cyril Ramaphosa will be its Republic Day chief guest in 2019, weeks after US President Donald Trump declined New Delhi’s invitation, citing pressing engagements.
Ramaphosa, 65, became president this year, succeeding Jacob Zuma as South Africa’s head of state.
After the US declined India’s invitation, the government was looking for a country with strategic and symbolic significance. Cyril Ramaphosa, a follower of Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela, was invited because this year will mark Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary.