The Deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa gave quite a lit speech on Monday night. Speaking at the Nelson Mandela foundation, commemorating the third anniversary of the passing of the country’s first democratic president, Ramaphosa did not hold back.
Ramaphosa was vocal about greed, corruption, arrogance and “shutting out” of veterans from the ANC.
Huffington Post South Africa quoted him as saying:
“This is the time to listen, this is not the time to display a sense of arrogance. This is not the time to ignore our people and this is the time to heed what they are saying no matter how difficult it may be.
“This is the time to heed everything our people are saying.
“This is indeed the time to put the interests of our people ahead of our own parochial interests as leaders and to do so as we listen to what our people are saying.”
HuffPo also says that Ramaphosa called on the party to not shut out veterans. According to the publication, more than 100 veterans of the movement, including Ahmed Kathrada, Denis Goldberg, Cheryl Caroulus, Frank Chikane, Frenie Ginwala, Sphiwe Nyanda and Fazel Randera have grouped together under “For the Sake of Our Future” banner, expressing concern about the future of both South Africa and the ANC.
But Ramaphosa wasn’t done there. Doing his best statesman impression, he reiterated how it’s time to listen to everyone. So maybe that was an Oprah impression (you must be listened to, you must be listened, EVERY ONE MUST BE LISTENED TO, etc).
He’s quoted as saying:
“We also need to listen to our students. We need to listen to them even when they are protesting in our campuses,.
“We need to listen to the workers of our country who are eking out an existence on a paltry wage, to the communities whose taps have run dry and yes we need to listen to those veterans of our struggle who believe we may have gone astray.
Jokes aside, these are all very important points. There’s a shit ton of hostility in the discourse at the moment. Between violent student protests and workers fighting for a minimum wage, there’s a lot of babble, but very little action.
Ramaphosa saved the best for last, though. He dropped this:
“It is through a united action that we will be able to counter corruption and to deal with the sense of entitlement and also the unrestrained scramble for positions and resources. It is only through unity that we can defeat the virus of consumerism, individualism, and blatant greed.”
Well then… make of that what you will.