January 6, 2016 / 1:27 PM / 2 years ago

Ivory Coast president vows 'more efficient government', reappoints PM

Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara speaks during his inauguration ceremony at the Presidential Palace in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, November 3, 2015 REUTERS/Luc Gnago

ABIDJAN (Reuters) - Ivory Coast’s President Alassane Ouattara promised “a new departure” for French-speaking Africa’s largest economy on Wednesday as he started to reshuffle the government following his landslide re-election last October.

Ouattara, who won a second five-year term with nearly 84 percent of the vote, reappointed Daniel Kablan Duncan as prime minister and called for greater unity within the government.

“We have started a new mandate that must mark a new departure in the direction of state affairs,” Ouattara said at a meeting attended by journalists. “The objective is to establish a more unified government so that it can be more efficient.”

Earlier on Wednesday the government had handed in its resignation. A senior official said ministers would be named over the coming week.

Ouattara has promised to reduce poverty, promote ethnic and political reconciliation, write a new constitution and share the benefits of an economic boom more widely following nearly a decade of crisis that culminated in a civil war in 2011..

Ivory Coast is the world’s top cocoa grower but many say they have not shared in wealth generated by economic growth rates of around 9 percent in each of the past three years.

While more jobs are available and the minimum salary has increased, the cost of living remains high.

Writing by Makini Brice; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg and Gareth Jones

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