Emboldened Ramaphosa sends stern warning to ANC critics
South Africa Pesident Cyril Ramaphosa has fired a warning at his detractors within the ruling ANC, saying the party would punish those deemed to be working against it.
Delivering a keynote address at a gala dinner on Saturday evening to kick off the 111th anniversary celebrations for the party which was founded on 8 January, 1912, Ramaphosa called for unity, warning that “in fact, there is no longer any room left for those who are opposed to the (ANC’s) renewal process”.
“No room at all — and there is no longer room for those who want to sow seeds of divisions in the ANC,” he told gala attendants at the Imvelo Safari Estate in Mangaung in the Free State province. The annual gala dinner raised close to R6 million, with seats at the 10-seater president’s table selling for 1.2 million Rand in total.
On Sunday, community members across the province flocked to the 15 000 seater Dr Petrus Molemela Stadium, for the celebrations, where Ramaphosa was due to deliver the annual January 8 statement that outlines the ANC’s programme for the year. The first statement was issued in 1972 while the ANC was in exile under the leadership of its then-president Oliver Tambo.
This year’s statement, which was approved by the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC) on Friday, is expected to expand on economic challenges caused by load-shedding, deteriorating roads and infrastructure, and unemployment.
At Saturday’s gala dinner, Ramaphosa said the statement would affirm the action plan needed to address the challenges facing the country and to unite the fractured ANC. Ramaphosa was re-elected for a second term at the ANC’s 55th elective conference last month.