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President Ramaphosa facilitates closer collaboration with the Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry NPC

President Cyril Ramaphosa has this morning, Friday 23 February held an engagement with the Durban Chamber of Commerce and Industry NPC. This initiative is a partnership with the KZN Growth Coalition.

The President was supported by a Government delegation comprising of Ministers Gordhan, Cele, Mchunu, Ramokgopa and Zikalala.

The purpose of the engagement was to give the private sector an opportunity to engage with Government on Durban's most pressing issues.

The last Presidential Engagement took place in May 2022. This morning's session presented an opportunity for the President and the Durban Business community to recap on measures that have been put in place to grow the provinces economy and address the current water, electricity and infrastructure challenges.  

During the interaction, the President and the Ministers briefed the business community on various initiatives that are currently underway in assisting eThekwini and the Province through the various interventions led by the National Government. 

To accelerate the speedy resolution of issues impacting the eThekwini metro, President Ramaphosa has set up the Presidential eThekwini working group that will be made up of Ministers in the affected portfolios, working alongside the metro and business. The working group will present their progress reports to the President regularly. 

Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President - 

Issued by: The Presidency

Address by President Cyril Ramaphosa at the Opening of the National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders, Parliament, Cape Town

Chairperson of the National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders, Kgosi Thabo Milton Seatlholo, Rapulana!
Deputy Chairperson of the National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders, Inkosi Mavuso Langa, Ah! Zwelidumile,
Your Majesties, Kings and Queens,
Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, Mr Amos Masondo,
Speaker of the National Assembly, Ms Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula,
Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Ms Thembi Nkadimeng,
Ministers and Deputy Ministers,
Chairpersons and Deputy Chairpersons of Provincial Houses of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders,
The President and Deputy Presidents of Contralesa and Rolesa,
Chairperson of the National Khoi-San Council, Mr Cecil le Fleur,
Leaders of political parties,
Representatives of Chapter 9 Institutions,
Directors-General and officials,
Ladies and Gentlemen 

It is an honour for me once again to address the National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders.

This is a particular important year, in which we celebrate 30 years since attaining our freedom. 

As we gather here today, we keenly feel a great void left by Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, who passed away last year. 

Beyond being a fount of knowledge with respect to the institution of traditional leadership, Umntwana wakwaPhindangene was always seated here, on these benches, at the annual opening of this House. 

We always would look forward to his participation in the debate and to his eloquence. He is indeed sorely missed. 

Let me take this opportunity to condemn in the strongest terms the rise in killings of traditional leaders, especially in KwaZulu-Natal. 

Our law enforcement agencies are hard at work to ensure that those responsible are brought to book.

On behalf of government, I wish to pass our deepest condolences to all families for the loss of their loved ones and to you for the loss of your colleagues. 

May their souls and those of other traditional leaders who passed on since the last opening of the House continue to rest in peace. 

Honourable Members, 

In my State of the Nation Address delivered earlier this month, I reflected on the journey we have traversed over the past 30 years since attaining our freedom. 

I outlined the indisputable gains we have made as a country not only in giving effect to the values of our noble Constitution, but in improving the lives of millions of our citizens. 

Yes, we certainly have much further to go. 

But it is incumbent on us to consolidate these gains as we chart the course for a new, better future where there is shared prosperity, true freedom and meaningful equality. We strive to achieve a society where no one is left behind. 

As a nation we can also be proud of the journey we have travelled according to the institution of traditional leadership and the stature it deserves. 

Today, our Kings are recognised as Kings as opposed to Paramount Chiefs, a term which colonial and apartheid rule introduced to make it clear that in their minds the real Kings were only those found in Europe. 

Today we have a National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders that plays an active and meaningful role in our national life. 

We do of course wish that more of our Khoi-San leaders are brought into the fold, and are formally recognised under the Traditional and Khoi-San Leadership Act. 

The Commission on Khoi-San Matters has been appointed to receive and assess applications for recognition and make recommendations to the Minister.

This process is taking longer than was initially envisaged, but it is my humble appeal that we allow the Commission the space to continue with this complex historical mission that they have been assigned. 


As government we remain committed to working with the institution of traditional leadership in pursuit of progress and development. We did so extremely successfully during the COVID-19 pandemic, during recent floods, and in a number of other areas. 

We are working together to combat gender-based violence, the scourge that is tearing our communities apart. 

I have just returned from the annual Summit of Heads of State and Government of the African Union, where we participated in a high-level event on promoting positive masculinity across our continent.

We need to be doing more in our communities to bring men into this effort, and focus on prevention and awareness raising. 

Personally, I have been engaging with young men through peer dialogues where they are able to speak openly about what masculinity and manhood means to them, and also commit themselves to playing their part to end gender-based violence.

I call on our male traditional leaders to be part of this effort and to start their own men’s dialogues. The influence and stature you bring to bear can and does make a difference, given the role that cultural norms and practices often play in perpetuating violence against women and girls.

Furthermore, this House’s partnership with Parliament and the SANAC Men’s Parliament is greatly appreciated, and should continue to enjoy the support of our traditional leaders.

This spirit of unity should continue as we work together to bring development to our communities. 


Climate change is a growing concern in South Africa. The recent flooding we have experienced, together with other extreme weather events, are a stark reminder that we cannot be complacent about this grave threat to both lives and livelihoods.

It is pleasing to note that the institution of traditional and Khoi-San leadership is once again playing its role to assist communities. 

I specifically wish to commend the work done by the structure of spouses and female traditional leaders called uMgogodla kaZulu during the floods that engulfed KwaZulu-Natal. 

The Ondlunkulu stood up in partnership with the Al-Imdaad, Old Mutual, Princess Gabo and Kaizer Junior Foundations and others to help those who were affected by floods. 

We appreciate this valuable work. 

I have been advised that several other provinces have formalised the structures of spouses and women traditional leaders of amaKhosi. We implore this House to continue working together with provincial houses to ensure that such structures are established and capacitated.

Drug abuse is another serious challenge in our communities. It is encouraging to note that this House is working with the Central Drug Authority to support its work. 

I urge you as this House to encourage provinces and local Houses to establish relationships with community organisations to fight the scourge of drugs together. 

We have a shared responsibility to work together to address our country’s unemployment crisis, particularly among young people

The Presidential Youth Employment Intervention, the National Youth Service and the Youth Employment Service are just some of the initiatives we are implementing that are making a difference.

I call on this House to play an active role in the ongoing process of recruiting young people into the National Rural Youth Service Corps that is being coordinated by the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development.

The InvestRural blueprint handed over to me by the former Chairperson of this House, the late iNkosi Mahlangu, is being fused into government programmes. 

The training of young people by the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development is a practical example of this. Another is the work being done by the Department of Traditional Affairs in partnership with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy to streamline and integrate Social Labour Plans into industry operations.

The Welisizwe Rural Bridges Programme coordinated by the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure is yet another example of positive and meaningful change being brought to rural areas. Just last month I attended the launch of one of these bridges in KwaZulu-Natal. 

To witness the difference these bridges are making in the lives of rural communities, especially for young learners who need to cross rivers to get to school, is remarkable.

I believe Minister Sihle Zikalala shared the details of this programme with this House at the Xivijo in Bloemfontein last year. 

We know that capacity building is essential if we are to enhance the role traditional leaders play in development. 

In this regard, we welcome the partnership between the Department of Traditional Affairs and the National School of Government to provide training on, among others, the facilitating socio-economic development for traditional communities.

The programme is aimed at empowering traditional leaders to act as change agents in their communities, and to transfer new knowledge and skills so we can initiate sustainable economic interventions in our rural areas.

Our goal is an active rural citizenry with our traditional leaders at the helm.

The issue of transferring communal land to traditional councils is one of great interest to this House. 

As government we are in the process of finalising the bill on communal land, which will be followed by extensive consultations. 

I know that this process is taking longer than expected, but democracy requires that we give society a voice in matters that concern them.

The challenges facing initiation should be decisively addressed. We cannot continue to have customary initiation being turned into a harmful practice. 

We need to do all in our powers as government, communities, traditional leaders, the National Initiation Oversight Committee and provincial structures to put to an end to these unnecessary and entirely avoidable deaths and injuries. 

I urge this House to continue to monitor and guide provinces and various local houses on the provisions of the Customary Initiation Act. 

We must live up to the slogan of Mabaye Baphila Babuye Baphila. 

Another matter that has been outstanding for some time in our programme is the Traditional Courts Act. I have now assented to the Act and will soon be proclaiming the date on which it comes into effect. 

In the meantime, the Department of Justice and Constitutional Development and the Department of Traditional Affairs have started with some of the preparatory work that will facilitate implementation. 

This includes visiting some of the traditional councils to further discuss their approaches to alternative dispute resolution and the resources they deploy in this regard. 

This is a matter on which we have finally made good progress. 

We have had concerns expressed to us by this House with regards to involving traditional leadership more in the work of the Inter-Ministerial task Team. The Deputy President and myself are seized with the matter of ensuring that members of this House are invited to workstream meetings and are able to participate more fully.

On the 29th of May, South Africans will be going to the polls to vote in our seventh democratic elections for national and provincial government.

As we prepare for this historic occasion, I once again urge traditional leaders to continue to encourage all eligible voters to register and participate in these elections. 

As we have done before, we call on traditional leaders to actively promote free and fair campaigning, and to ensure that all voters can exercise their democratic right.

May you remain with the spirit of our forebears who never retreated when challenges were facing them. Working side by side, we will move forward. 

Ke a leboga. Ngiyathokoza. Ngiyabonga. Dankie.

I thank you.

President Ramaphosa meets with US congressional delegation

President Cyril Ramaphosa today, 21 February 2024, received for a visit from a bipartisan congressional delegation from the United States of America, in Tuynhuys, Cape Town. The delegation is visiting South Africa at the invitation of the Aspen Institute.

The President and the US congressional delegation discussed the importance of the relationship between South Africa and the US, which manifests in strong economic, political and social ties.

“Our relationship is characterised by mutual respect and a willingness to engage in constructive dialogue even on issues where we may differ,” said President Ramaphosa.

The President further highlighted the support that the US has provided to South Africa over the years in the fight against HIV and AIDS. The PEPFAR programme has contributed significantly – and continues to contribute – to the remarkable progress South Africa has made to end HIV as a public health emergency.

President Ramaphosa emphasised the strength of bilateral relations as evidenced through several meetings and calls he has had with President Biden, official engagements between South African and US delegations which has allowed for a constructive exchange of views and further cemented the ties between the two countries.

The engagement also covered South Africa’s economic opportunities with a focus on the expansion of trade and investment ties. The African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) continues to present significant value to Africa’s industrialisation, integration and the diversification of the continent’s economies. AGOA provides a platform for US investors to participate in the opportunities presented by the African Continental Free Trade Area (AFCTA).

On international relations, President Ramaphosa underscored South Africa’s commitment to promoting peace, security and development on the African continent and across the world. This includes South Africa’s non-aligned position that seeks to forge cordial relations with all countries and promote the resolution of conflict through dialogue.

The President emphasised the need for an inclusive negotiated settlement of the Israel-Palestinian conflict, and South Africa’s support for the legitimate aspirations of Palestinians to self-determination and statehood and of Israelis to peace and security. 

“We continue to make the call for the release of hostages, an immediate ceasefire and the urgent provision of humanitarian aid to the people of Gaza and meaningful negotiations towards a lasting solution,” said President Ramaphosa.

President Ramaphosa congratulated the delegation for the upcoming celebration of 250th anniversary of the US Declaration of Independence in July 2026 as South Africa marks 30 years of freedom and democracy.

Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President - 

Issued by: The Presidency

Statement from the Office of the Deputy President

The Presidency, in light of the gravity of the allegations made against Mr Mde, has decided to suspend him with immediate effect with full emoluments. 
Mr Mde has assured us of his willingness to cooperate with the investigation and the entire process to clear his name. 
The decision to suspend Mr Mde is also to ensure that the alleged victim feels protected during this process.
In this regard, the Deputy President's office would like to make the following announcements: 
- Firstly, Ms Itumeleng Mafatshe, Director of Content Development and Speech Writing, will act as the Chief Director for the Communications unit. 
- Secondly, the Deputy President has appointed Mr Keith Khoza, his political advisor, to act as his Spokesperson. 

Media enquiries: Keith Khoza on +27 66 195 8840
Issued by: The Presidency

President Ramaphosa announces 2024 General Elections date

President Cyril Ramaphosa has, in accordance with section 49(2) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, read with section 17 of the Electoral act of 1998, determined 29 May 2024 as the date for the 2024 General National and Provincial Elections. 

The President has also, in line with section 17(2) of the Electoral act 73 of 1998, consulted with the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) on the election date. Furthermore, the President convened a meeting with all 9 Provincial Premiers and the IEC to discuss the state of readiness for the General Elections.

The 2024 elections coincide with South Africa's celebration of 30 years of freedom and democracy. Therefore, President Ramaphosa calls on all eligible voters to fully participate in this important and historic milestone of our democratic calendar.

“Beyond the fulfilment of our constitutional obligation, these upcoming elections are also a celebration of our democratic journey and a determination of the future that we all desire. I call on all South Africans to exercise their democratic right to vote and for those who will be campaigning to do so peacefully, within the full observance of the law. We also urge unregistered voters to use the online registration platform to register,” said President Ramaphosa. 

The proclamation to declare the date will be issued in due course.

Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President - 

Issued by: The Presidency

Minister of Electricity to engage with business stakeholders in KZN

The Minister in The Presidency responsible for Electricity, Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa will, as part of the Ministry’s on going programme, tomorrow, 20 February 2024, engage with business stakeholders in KwaZulu-Natal on energy challenges and interventions.

The engagement will take place at the Durban Exhibition Centre at 10h00. 

The energy sector in South Africa is facing significant challenges which have implications for businesses, households, and the economy at large. 

The engagement will provide an opportunity for stakeholders to share their perspectives on the energy challenges businesses face in the region

The primary objective of this engagement is to foster dialogue and collaboration between the Ministry of Electricity, supported by the KZN Provincial Government and business stakeholders in the Province.

The Minister will be joined by the Premier of KwaZulu-Natal, Nomusa Dube-Ncube and Mayor of eThekwini, Mxolisi Kaunda. 

Members of the media are invited to cover the open session as follows 

Date: Tuesday, 20 February 2024
Time: 10h00 (media to arrive at 09h30)
Venue: Durban Exhibition Centre, KwaZulu-Natal

Media interested in covering the event are request to RSVP by sending their details to Kutlwano Huma on 066 079 1365 or Joseph Kubayi on 060 534-4187 by no later than 16h00 on Monday, 19 February 2024. 

Media enquires: Tsakane Khambane, Spokesperson in the Ministry of Electricity, on 082 084 5566 /

Issued by: The Ministry in The Presidency for Electricity

President Ramaphosa concludes participation at the African Union Summit

President Cyril Ramaphosa has today 18 February, 2024, concluded his participation at the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU).

The AU Assembly met under the theme: “Educate an Africa fit for the 21st Century: Building resilient education systems for increased access to inclusive, lifelong, quality, and relevant learning in Africa”.

The Assembly discussed the status of peace and security on the continent and the Report of the AU Peace and Security Council (AUPSC). The discussion took place against the backdrop of great concern regarding the state of peace and security in Africa. The ongoing and concerning trend of unconstitutional changes of government that have occurred in West Africa as well as the ongoing conflicts in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Sudan, South Sudan and Mozambique. 

Furthermore, the Summit accepted a report on the progress of the Institutional Reforms of the AU.

The highlight of the Summit was the launch of the Second Ten-Year Implementation Plan of the AU’s Agenda 2063: “The Africa we want”. 

Agenda 2063 serves as a fifty-year blueprint for Africa’s socio-economic development and integration, adopted by the AU member states after extensive consultations across the continent.

A key flagship project of Agenda 2063 in which South Africa is playing a leading role is the operationalisation of the African Continental Free Trade Agreement (the AfCFTA), that serves as a milestone development in the evolution of the AU.

President Ramaphosa presented a report on the continent’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the state of readiness against future health threats, in his capacity as the Champion of the AU’s COVID-19 response. As the pandemic is waning on the continent, South Africa intends to work with the AU Commission and the Africa Centre for Disease Control (FACT) towards expanding the role of the President to include all other health pandemics that are affecting the continent. 

“Although the Africa CDC has classified COVID-19 as no longer a public health emergency of international concern, it remains an ever-evolving endemic virus. Furthermore, the effects of the pandemic continue to reverberate across our continent and beyond.  The COVID-19 crisis was an opportunity for us as Africa to bolster our manufacturing sector. We were able to draw in an impressive USD 1.1 billion in financial and technical investments, in addition to the USD 1 billion advanced market commitment from GAVI, the Vaccine Alliance” said President Ramaphosa. 

The President praised the concerted efforts and collaboration demonstrated by the continent during the Covid-19 pandemic. He further urged the gathered leaders to continue improving the levels of alertness of their countries against future pandemics. 
“Despite these successes, we are still at the delicate juncture of recovery. There is the threat of future pandemics. Our rapid and precise interventions have averted further crises, and for this, we must continue to sharpen our vigilance.

 The adoption of a strong Common Africa Position on Pandemic Preparedness and Response (CAP PPPR) is non-negotiable. It will define our roadmap to safeguarding our people, with a keen focus on critical issues”, said President Ramaphosa. 

Addressing the Summit leaders on positive masculinity and the need to support the development of the AU Convention on Violence against Women and Girls, the President expressed his gratitude for the effort of Champions on Positive Masculinity and all member states that have been part of the continental movement.

The President called on the Assembly to forge a strong and enduring commitment to protect and uplift those who have suffered from violence against women and girls.
“We must now launch the AU Convention on Ending Violence Against Women and Girls Campaign, championing continent-wide consultations and ensuring that the journey to developing this critical instrument is shared by citizens across our vast continent.

Developing the AU Convention on Ending Violence Against Women and Girls is more than a political act. It is a moral imperative to redefine our societies, to confront the legacies of colonialism, patriarchy and racism, and to champion equality, freedom and self-determination for every African.

As President of South Africa, I hereby commit to support the development and timely adoption of a comprehensive convention that is backed by resources and institutional mechanisms to ensure its efficacy”, concluded President Ramaphosa.

South Africa has welcomed and supported the 2024 AU Theme: “Educate an African fit for the 21st Century - Building resilient education systems for increased access to inclusive, lifelong, quality, and relevant learning in Africa”.

South Africa supported the principles and spirit of both the 2024 AU theme as contained in the Concept Note and the Roadmap, which affirmed the critical need to transform and revitalize systems on the continent to place education at the centre of Africa’s development agenda.

On the margins of the AU Summit President Ramaphosa held several bilateral meetings with Heads of State and Government of the Republic of Angola, the State of Palestine,  Republic of Kenya and the Republic of South Sudan . The meetings centred on the strengthening of cooperation in areas of mutual interest. 

President Ramaphosa also held a trilateral meeting with President Felix Tshisikedi of the Democratic Republic of Congo and President Évariste Ndayishimiye of Burundi. The meeting focused on areas of common interests including the restoration of peace and security in the Eastern DRC. 

President Ramaphosa wished His Excellency President Mohamed Ould Ghazouani, President of Mauritania  a successful tenure  on his election as the new Chairperson  of the African Union and commended the leadership of  outgoing Chairperson President Azali Ghazouani of the Union of Comoros. 

Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President - 

Issued by: The Presidency

Statement from the Office of the Deputy President

The Office of the Deputy President has noted the article published by the Sunday World today, on 18 February 2024.

The allegations that the Deputy President and his Chief of Staff are protecting the Deputy President’s Spokesperson are false.

The Deputy President has been briefed by the Chief of Staff that a letter of intention to suspend Mr Mde in light of the allegations made against him was issued and hand delivered to the Spokesperson Mr Vukani Mde.

The Deputy President is aware that there is a process underway in the Presidency to investigate the allegations made against Mde by one of the senior employees in the office, and is of the view that all due processes should be adhered to. 

The Deputy President condemns any form of gender based violence especially against women and also believes that all employees should be protected from any kind of victimisation.  

The Office of the Deputy President wishes to assure that this matter is given the necessary attention it deserves and will provide an update in due course.

Media enquiries: Mr Mduduzi Mbada, Head of the Office of the Deputy President, on 082 900 1893 

Issued by: The Presidency

President Ramaphosa to address the opening of the National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders

President Cyril Ramaphosa will on Thursday, 22 February 2024, deliver the keynote address at the Annual Official Opening of the National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders (NHTKL) in Cape Town, NCOP Chamber.
The event, in accordance with Section 33 (1) (b) of the Traditional and Khoi-San Leadership Act, 2019 (Act 3 of 2019), will mark the official opening of the National House of Traditional and Khoi-San Leaders.
Distinguished guests expected to attend the event include Cabinet Ministers, Deputy Ministers, Premiers, and MECs responsible for Traditional Affairs, Kings, EXCO Members of Provincial Houses of Traditional Leaders, CONTRALESA, ROLESA, Business Sector, Religious Sector, NGOs, and Representatives from SADC Countries, the National Khoi-San Council, as well as Chapter 9 Institutions.
Details of the event are as follows:
Date: Thursday, 22 February 2024
Time: 10:00
Venue: NCOP Chamber, Parliament, Cape Town

Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President - 

Issued by: The Presidency

South Africa welcomes ICJ injunction on protection of civilians in Rafah, Gaza

The Republic of South Africa welcomes the International Court of Justice decision on the recent Article 75 application.

The court affirms our view that the perilous situation demands immediate and effective implementation of the provisional measures indicated by the Court in its Order of 26 January 2024, which are applicable throughout the Gaza Strip, and has clarified that this includes Rafah.

The court decision has noted the "that the most recent developments in the Gaza Strip, and in Rafah in particular, “would exponentially increase what is already a humanitarian nightmare with untold regional consequences”, as stated by the United Nations Secretary-General (Remarks to the General Assembly on priorities for 2024 (7 February 2024).

The court has accepted: 

1. That Israel's planned incursions in Rafah would render what is already a humanitarian disaster even more perilous. 

2. The situation requires compliance with the existing provisional measures.

3. Compliance with the existing provisional measures requires the protection of civilians in Gaza including Rafah.

The court has unequivocally explained that compliance with the existing provisional measures requires Israel to ensure the safety and security of all Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

Any decision by Israel to engage in military activities against Palestinians in the current circumstances is a violation of the order of the International Court of Justice.

The Court states in terms: “The Court emphasises that the State of Israel remains bound to fully comply with its obligations under the Genocide Convention and with the said Order, including by ensuring the safety and security of the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.”

South Africa will continue to use existing channels such as the United Nations Security Council to ensure full and effective implementation of the existing provisional measures.


Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President - 

Issued by: The Presidency

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