South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa accepts PM Modi’s invite, to be 2019 Republic Day chief guest

Earlier, US President Donald Trump had been invited to attend the Republic Day parade by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. But he declined the invitation because of “scheduling constraints”.
South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.(Twitter/@MEAIndia)
South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.(Twitter/@MEAIndia)
Updated on Dec 01, 2018 09:31 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | ByHT correspondent

South Africa President, Cyril Ramaphosa, accepted Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s invitation to be the chief guest for India’s Republic Day celebrations in 2019, reported news agency ANI.

Earlier, US President Donald Trump had been invited to attend the Republic Day parade by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. However, Trump declined the invitation because of “scheduling constraints”, the White House had said, but stressed the “strong personal rapport” shared by them.

The White House did not elaborate on the constraints but the Republic Day parade on January 26 is around the time when US presidents present their annual report to Congress, the State of the Union address, which is a statement of achievements of the last year and plans for the next.

“President Trump was honored by Prime Minister Modi’s invitation for him to be Chief Guest of India’s Republic Day on January 26, 2019, but is unable to participate due to scheduling constraints,” a White House spokesperson had earlier said in a statement.

Barack Obama, who became the first American president to attend the Republic Day parade in 2015, had moved up his address to January 20 from the usual end-of-month slot he had favoured thus far. But it was not clear if Trump’s “scheduling constraints” included the address.

Also read | Top African leader on shortlist for R­Day chief guest, decision soon

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