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Minister of Electricity to provide update on Energy Action Plan progress from Megawatt Park

Dr. Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, Minister in The Presidency responsible for Electricity, will be hosting a media briefing to discuss the latest developments regarding the implementation of the Energy Action Plan.

Date: Monday, 20 May 2024
Time: 09h00 (media setup from 08h00)
Venue: Eskom, Megawatt Park, Maxwell Drive, Sunninghill, Sandton

Live Streaming:

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Please RSVP by sending your details (Name, Surname,ID number and Media house) to:

Deadline: 08h30 on Sunday, 19 May 2024

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

Issued by: The Ministry in The Presidency for Electricity

President Cyril Ramaphosa's call to vote message - May 2024 Elections

Fellow South Africans, 

On the 29th of May 2024, we will hold elections for national and provincial government.

Many of us remember the historic Election Day in 1994, when we voted for the very first time for a democratic government of our choice.

We all remember how we felt as we stood in long queues patiently waiting to cast our vote for a government of our choice.

As we cast our votes, we were mindful of the weight of history. We were mindful of the fact that so many people had struggled and sacrificed for this right to vote and many had lost their lives in the cause of freedom.

The right to vote has been the cornerstone of our democratic order and is enshrined in the Bill of Rights of our constitution. 

As you cast your ballot, firstly through special vote on the 27th and 28th of May, and many of us on the 29th of May, you will be demonstrating your faith in our democratic order.

By placing your crosses on the ballot papers, you will be executing a responsibility that history has placed on your shoulders.  

Most importantly, you will be deciding for yourself the direction that our country should take and determining the path that we should follow to get there.

By voting, you are taking responsibility for your future and the future of your community.

Your vote is important. Your vote counts. 

As the election campaigns have unfolded, we have shown that we are a diverse, tolerant, and free society where different views can be heard and are respected. 

Let us continue in this way.

Let us all work together to ensure that we have an election that is free, fair, and peaceful. I call upon you to go and vote.

I thank you.

Remarks by President Cyril Ramaphosa on the signing of the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill, Union Buildings, Tshwane

Minister of Health, Dr Joe Phaahla,
MECs of Health,
Senior officials,
Representatives of the health fraternity,
Representatives of civil society,
Representatives of labour,
Members of Parliament’s Portfolio and Select Committees,
Public representatives,
Members of the media,
Distinguished guests,
Ladies and gentlemen,

We are gathered here today to witness the signing into law of the National Health Insurance Bill, a pivotal moment in the transformation of our country.

It is a milestone in South Africa's ongoing quest for a more just society.

This transformational health care initiative gives further effect to our constitutional commitment to progressively realise access to health care services for all its citizens. 

At its essence, the NHI is a commitment to eradicate the stark inequalities that have long determined who receives adequate healthcare and who suffers from neglect.

By putting in place a system that ensures equal access to health care regardless of a person’s social and economic circumstances, the NHI takes a bold stride towards a society where no individual must bear an untenable financial burden while seeking medical attention. 

This vision is not just about social justice. It is also about efficiency and quality. 

The provision of health care in this country is currently fragmented, unsustainable and unacceptable. 

The public sector serves a large majority of the population, but faces budget constraints. The private sector serves a fraction of society at a far higher cost without a proportional improvement in health outcomes. 

Addressing this imbalance requires a radical reimagining of resource allocation and a steadfast commitment to universal healthcare, a commitment we made to the United Nations.

The real challenge in implementing the NHI lies not in the lack of funds, but in the misallocation of resources that currently favours the private health sector at the expense of public health needs.

The NHI Bill presents an innovative approach to funding universal healthcare based on social solidarity. 

It proposes a comprehensive strategy that combines various financial resources, including both additional funding and reallocating funds already in the health system.

This approach ensures contributions from a broader spectrum of society, emphasising the shared responsibility and mutual benefits envisioned by the NHI.

The financial hurdles facing the NHI can be navigated with careful planning, strategic resource allocation and a steadfast commitment to achieving equity.

The NHI carries the potential to transform the healthcare landscape, making the dream of quality, accessible care a reality for all its citizens.

The NHI Fund will procure services from public and private service providers to ensure all South Africans have access to quality health care.

The NHI recognises the respective strengths and capabilities of the public and private health care systems. It aims to ensure that they complement and reinforce each other.

Through more effective collaboration between the public and private sectors, we can ensure that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

The effective implementation of the NHI depends on the collective will of the South African people. 

We all need to embrace a future where healthcare is a shared national treasure, reflective of the dignity and value we accord to every South African life.

Preparations for the implementation of NHI necessarily require a focused drive to improve the quality of health care. 

We have already begun implementing a national quality improvement plan in public and private health care facilities, and are now seeing vast improvement.

In signing this Bill, we are signalling our determination to advance the constitutional right to access health care as articulated in Section 27 of the Constitution.

The passage of the Bill sets the foundation for ending a parallel inequitable health system where those without means are relegated to poor health care. 

Under the NHI, access to quality care will be determined by need not by ability to pay. This will produce better health outcomes and prevent avoidable deaths.

The NHI is an important instrument to tackle poverty.

The rising cost of health care makes families poorer.

By contrast, health care provided through the NHI frees up resources in poor families for other essential needs.

The NHI will make health care in the country as a whole more affordable. 

The way health care services will be paid for is meant to contain comprehensive health care costs and to ensure the available resources are more efficiently used. 

Through the NHI, we plan to improve the effectiveness of health care provision by requiring all health facilities to achieve minimum quality health standards and be accredited.

Following the signing of this Bill, we will be establishing the systems and putting in place the necessary governance structures to implement the NHI based on the primary health care approach.

The implementation of the NHI will be done in a phased approach, with key milestones in each phase, rather than an overnight event. 

There has been much debate about this Bill. Some people have expressed concern. Many others have expressed support.

What we need to remember is that South Africa is a constitutional democracy.

The Parliament that adopted this legislation was democratically-elected and its Members carried an electoral mandate to establish a National Health Insurance.

South Africa is also a country governed by the rule of law in which no person may be unduly deprived of their rights.

We are a country that has been built on dialogue and partnership, on working together to overcome differences in pursuit of a better life for all its people.

The NHI is an opportunity to make a break with the inequality and inefficiency that has long characterised our approach to the health of the South African people.

Let us work together, in a spirit of cooperation and solidarity, to make the NHI work.

I thank you.

Inaugural Elijah Barayi Memorial Lecture by President Cyril Ramaphosa, University of Johannesburg, Soweto

Programme Director,
Minister of Employment and Labour, Mr Thulas Nxesi,
Ministers and Deputy Ministers,
Premier of Gauteng, Mr Panyaza Lesufi,
President of COSATU, Ms Zingiswa Losi,
Acting Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of Johannesburg, 
Dr Mpoti Ralephata,
Representatives from labour and business,
Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen, 

Good morning. 

It is an honour to be invited to speak about my comrade, mentor and friend, Elijah Barayi. 

It is significant that this inaugural lecture is being held during the 30th year of our freedom. 

The achievement of democracy was a cause to which Elijah Barayi dedicated his life. 

It is a tragedy that he never got to see the dawn of freedom break over the horizon. 

We lost him thirty years ago, just three months before South Africa’s first non-racial election. 

Yet what a great legacy he left behind. What a powerful voice that lives on. 

Elijah Barayi’s life was a testament to bravery and to standing firm on principle even in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. 

It takes a hero to go against the norm and to stand for what is right even when those around them remain silent or look away. 

Elijah Barayi was a hero of the anti-apartheid struggle. 

He joined the ANC Youth League as a teenager in the early 1950s and was active in the Defiance campaign. 

Speaking years later about his arrest for leading a march against the pass laws he said: “I was delighted to go to jail.” 

There would be many more jail sentences, including under the State of Emergency. After he was released, he was continuously harassed by the police, forcing him to leave his home town of Cradock. 

He sought refuge on the mines, first at State Mines in Brakpan, then in Carletonville on the West Rand. 

He was a hero and champion of mineworkers, the most oppressed and exploited class of workers throughout colonial and apartheid rule. 

He recruited himself into the National Union of Mineworkers that we formed in 1982 and rose from being a shaft steward to being elected vice-president of the union. 

Elijah Barayi, the son of a municipal worker and a domestic worker, was a hero of South Africa’s working class. 

At the launch of the Congress of South African Trade Unions in December 1985, he was elected as the federation’s first President. 

Those of us who were privileged to have witnessed history being made will remember it well. 

We remember the rally at Curries Fountain in Durban, where more than 10,000 people sang in unison: U-Cosatu-Sonyuka naya ’masingena enkululukweni… 

We remember the electrifying speech that Barayi made at the Congress. 

“You have six months to abolish the pass laws,” he told the regime.

He demanded the release of President Nelson Mandela, that the Bantustans be abolished, that the state of emergency be lifted, and for the army to withdraw from the townships. 

It was, as one prominent international publication called it, a declaration of defiance. 

It was this defiance that was to become a defining feature of COSATU in the years that followed.

Elijah Barayi’s impact extended far beyond our borders. 

He forged alliances with labour movements and other like-minded people around the world, garnering support for the anti-apartheid struggle and bringing global attention to the injustices being perpetrated in South Africa.

From its establishment, COSATU said that the struggle of workers on the shopfloor could not be separated from the wider struggle for liberation. 

We said that by their very nature, industrial issues are political. 

Elijah Barayi was instrumental in getting the National Union of Mineworkers to be the first COSATU union to adopt the Freedom Charter. 

His union activism could not be separated from the struggle for national liberation. 

I have told the story many times of how he would ask all candidates interviewing for positions with NUM if they knew the Freedom Charter. 

If they didn’t, they weren’t hired. 

As we look back on 30 years of democracy, we can see very clearly how the relationship between workers’ struggles and the fight for broader political and social change have shaped our country.

We can see how workers have contributed to defining our constitutional order. 

The Constitution with its Bill of Rights is the bedrock of the democratic society we have been striving to build since 1994. 

It is centred around the right of every South African to have their human dignity respected and protected. 

When the first COSATU congress demanded the right to strike, for benefits to be guaranteed to the unemployed and those threatened by retrenchment, for better occupational health and safety, and for the rights of female workers to be given particular protection, it was heralded as revolutionary. 

Thirty years into democracy, we have several progressive labour and social protection laws, together with a robust system of collective bargaining driven by strong institutions such as Nedlac and the CCMA. 

The right to engage in collective bargaining is enshrined in the Constitution. It has played a crucial role in improving worker rights and secured fair compensation, reasonable working hours and safer working environments. 

The Constitution enshrines the right to fair labour practices; to form and join a trade union and participate in its activities; and the right to strike. 

We have the Labour Relations Act and the Basic Conditions of Employment Act to protect and advance workers’ rights. 

We have laws to safeguard the health and safety of workers and a Compensation Fund to support workers who are injured or sick. 

The first COSATU Congress resolved to lead a campaign for a legally-enforced national minimum wage for all workers. 

Just over five years ago, after extensive engagements among social partners, we introduced the National Minimum Wage, improving the lives of over six million workers. 

Tied to the national minimum wage, the Congress called for the abolition of general sales tax on essential items. As government, we continue to implement value-added tax zero rating as a pro-poor policy.

In 2001 we established an Unemployment Insurance Fund, which has been a lifeline for vulnerable South Africans who are out of work. 

The Fund proved itself to be agile and adaptable during the COVID-19 pandemic, when it administered a relief scheme to support both workers and employers affected by the economic disruption caused by the pandemic. 

The first COSATU congress called for a national programme of public works to provide jobs for the unemployed. 

Since 1994 we have built a number of mass public employment programmes to provide income support, skills and training for South Africans who are out of work. 

These include the Expanded Public Works Programme, Community Works Programme, and most recently, the Presidential Employment Stimulus. 

We have also just recently launched a new phase of the Labour Activation Programme, which is focused on creating decent and sustainable work opportunities in many sectors across the economy. 

Over the past thirty years, we have used Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment, preferential procurement, the Black Industrialists Programme and worker share ownership schemes to transform patterns of ownership and control in the economy. 

I recently participated in a conference on the state of worker share ownership. 

In South Africa today, more than 500,000 workers are part-owners of the companies they work for. 

Mineworkers, farmworkers, workers in manufacturing and other sectors today share in the fruits of their labour through worker ownership schemes. 

As a country, we have come a long way in giving effect to the rights of women workers. 

We passed the Employment Equity Act to redress racial and gender discrimination in the workplace and continue to progressively implement affirmative action policies that favour women. 

We have laws protecting women against sexual harassment in the workplace. 

By law, no employer can discriminate against a woman on account of pregnancy. Women are entitled to a minimum of four months of maternity leave and can apply to the UIF for paid benefits. 

The principle of equal pay for work of equal value is enshrined in law. 

These achievements form part of the legacy of Elijah Barayi.

They need to be protected and advanced.

This is particularly important at a time when collective industrial relations are in decline in many parts of the world. 

Trade union membership has been going down over time, including in our own country. 

According to statistics from the Department of Employment and Labour, union membership fell by approximately 11 per cent last year. 

This is taking place at a time of greater automation, increasing casualisation of labour and more workers moving to the informal economy. 

Internal divisions, governance issues and the ability of unions to service and organise workers have also contributed to this decline. 

This is something that must be addressed with urgency. 

Strong trade union membership is vital to consolidate the gains of social protection, industrial relations, occupational health and safety, and workers’ rights. 

There some in our country who are calling for hard-won rights, like collective bargaining, to be curtailed and for the minimum wage to be scrapped. 

As a society committed to transformation, we cannot allow this to happen.

We have a collective responsibility to build on the achievements of democracy and to work with greater vigour to overcome poverty, unemployment and inequality.

Despite the progress we have made over the last 30 years, the legacy of apartheid continues to define so much of our society.

Inequality is exacerbated by high unemployment, poor economic growth, service delivery failures, corruption, crime and violence.

While we have seen great advances in access to education and health care, the poor and the working class remain at a great disadvantage.

Resolving these challenges requires concerted action from all sectors of society. 

Building a future that promotes decent work and social justice necessitates that we deepen our collaboration as government, business, labour and civil society. 

In this effort, trade unions must remain at the forefront. 

Labour is key to the success of our industrial policy, which aims to revitalise key industries, create and keep more jobs locally, and promote beneficiation of our vast mineral resources. 

The support of labour is important for our continued investment in economic and social infrastructure. 

Strong, organised labour is the most effective counter to the so-called construction mafias that are wreaking havoc and deterring investors. 

Labour must be the driving force behind a progressive and just transition to a low-carbon, climate resilient economy and society.

We must continue our collaboration as we strive to ensure that this transition is indeed just, and that it takes the rights and livelihoods of all affected workers and communities into account. 

Later today, we will be signing the National Health Insurance Bill into law. 

The NHI will fundamentally transform the lives of millions of South Africans. It introduces the principles of equity, solidarity and social justice into a healthcare system that has been for years characterised by high levels of inequality. 

We want labour to be at the forefront of popularising the NHI, of engaging with communities and employers alike on its benefits, and of partnering with government towards its implementation. 

The level of organisation that was detailed in the resolutions of the first COSATU congress must be brought to bear as we work together to improve the delivery of services in our communities, especially in rural areas. 

As government, we remain committed to reducing the outsourcing of municipal services, and we once again call on labour to work with us to develop internal capacity to deliver quality services. 

While we work to overcome the injustices of the past, we are looking to the future.

As technological advances and globalisation reshape the landscape of work, we need to be able to foster innovation and entrepreneurship while safeguarding workers' rights and promoting social dialogue. 

We need to invest in technology, infrastructure and education to enable sustainable and inclusive economic growth and job creation.

At the same time, we must strive to democratise the governance of work. 

In South Africa, this means strengthening and adapting labour laws, institutions and regulatory frameworks to protect workers' rights, promote fair competition and ensure social justice. 

We need to build a more inclusive and resilient labour market that will support a just transition, greater digitalisation and other drivers of change.

The children born at the dawn of our democracy are today 30 years old. 

The democratic changes we won in 1994 and the progressive policies we have implemented since have lifted millions out of poverty and despair and improved their material condition. 

Yet we know that life is hard for many South Africans.

Many young people are without jobs. Many families struggle to survive.

As long as the divisions in our society persist, as long as some people lead lives of quality and dignity whilst others suffer at the margins of the economy, our mission remains unfulfilled. 

We owe it to the memory of Elijah Barayi, to the South African people and to the generations to follow that we continue to work to overcome this inequality. 

We have achieved much. We have come far. 

Now is the time to set our sights on even further horizons. 

Now is the time to intensify the struggle for economic equality and shared prosperity for all. 

It is fitting, as we do so, that we recall the life and the contribution of Elijah Barayi. 

It is fitting that we recall his courage and his dedication, his defiance and his selflessness.

As we confront challenges that may at time seem insurmountable, we are encouraged by his resolve.

Let us honour the memory of giants like Elijah Barayi by renewing our commitment to building a better, stronger South Africa. 

As we draw inspiration from the life and times of the man we honour here today, let us deepen our resolve to advance freedom and social justice everywhere. 

I thank you.

President Ramaphosa to visit the George collapsed disaster site in the Western Cape

President Cyril Ramaphosa will on Thursday, 16 May 2024, visit the George disaster site, following the fatal collapse of the the partially built residential building. 

Since the fatal incident on Monday, 6 May 2024, government and its disaster management agencies at all levels has mobilised personnel and resources towards the rescue efforts and providing support to the survivors and families of the deceased.  

President Ramaphosa remains deeply attentive to the rescue and recovery efforts underway and has expressed his deep condolences to the family and friends of the deceased workers. 

Ahead of the President Ramaphosa’s visit on Thursday, Ministers and Deputy Ministers in the Departments of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Employment and Labour, Health, Police, International Relations and Cooperation, and Public Works and Infrastructure have visited the site and have been working  collaboratively with the Disaster Joint Operations Centre, with the Western Cape Provincial government and the Garden Route District Municipality. 

The visit of the President to the disaster site will proceed as follows:

Visit to the Disaster Joint Operations Centre 
Time: 10h30
Date: Thursday, 16 May 2024
Venue:  Eden Disaster Operations Centre, George 

Visit to the disaster site and meeting with families
Time: 12h00 
Date: Thursday, 16 May 2024
Venue: George Municipal Civic Centre  Hall 

Media doorstop opportunity

Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President -

Issued by: The Presidency

Minister of Electricity to visit Camden, Majuba, and Tutuka Power Stations

The Minister in The Presidency responsible for Electricity, Dr. Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, will be visiting Camden, Majuba, and Tutuka Power Stations today, 15 May 2024, to engage with and express appreciation to the dedicated men and women of ESKOM for their contribution to the significant improvement to generation performance.

Today’s visit comes after the Minister's recent visits to Kusile, Kendal, Arnot, Hendrina, and Duvha Power Stations earlier this week.

These visits are occurring during a time when the country has experienced over 48 days without load shedding. 

On Monday, 13 May 2024, ESKOM also breached above the historic August 2021, 70% Energy Availability Factor mark by achieving an EAF of 70.78%.

Members of the media are invited to join the Tutuka leg of the visit on Wednesday, 15 May 2024, at 14h20 at Tutuka Power Station.

Media enquiries: Tsakane Khambane, Spokesperson in the Ministry of Electricity, at 082 084 5555 or

Issued by: The Presidency

President commends Springbok Women on African Championship

President Cyril Ramaphosa offers his warm congratulations and those of the nation to the Springbok Women national rugby team on winning the Rugby Africa Women’s Cup and advancing to the 2025 Rugby World Cup in England.

The Springbok Women beat Madagascar 46-17 at home in Antananarivo at the weekend to retain their African championship.

This victory qualifies Africa’s top team for next year’s Rugby World Cup and the WXV 2 tournament which South Africa will host in September 2024.

Organised by World Rugby, this tournament will see South Africa compete against the national teams of Scotland, Italy, the USA, Japan and Samoa in the second tier of this three-tier international competition.

President Ramaphosa said: “Well done to our Springbok Women for adding another trophy to our national trophy cabinet.

“Alongside the Springboks and Banyana Banyana, our Springbok Women make us proud on the field of play and showcase the strides we have made in the development of the women of our nation during our 30 years of freedom.

“Congratulations once more to the team on the field, the technical staff and SA Rugby.”


Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President, on

Issued by: The Presidency

President mourns passing of Mrs Nomgcibelo Jocelyn Motsuenyane

President Cyril Ramaphosa has learned with sadness of the passing of Mrs Nomgcibelo Jocelyn Motsuenyane following her loss of her husband of 70 years, Dr Sam Motsuenyane.

The President offers his deep condolences to the Motsuenyane family as they prepare for Ma Motsuenyane’s funeral tomorrow, 15 May 2024.

The President said: “As South Africans, we stand by the Motsuenyanes in your moment of compounded loss.

“Sam and Jocelyn Motsuenyane are icons of their generation whose belief in education and entrepreneurship as keys to self-realisation and reliance sustained communities and contributed to the inclusive economy we continue to build today.

“May they rest together in peace at the end of a life of service and upliftment and a union they shared for 70 years.”


Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President, on

Issued by: The Presidency

President Ramaphosa to publicly sign National Health Insurance Bill into law

President Cyril Ramaphosa will on Wednesday, 15 May 2024, publicly sign into law the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill which directs the transformation of the South Africa’s health care system to achieve universal coverage for health services and, through this, overcome critical socio-economic imbalances and inequities of the past.
The signing ceremony will take place at the Union Buildings, Pretoria, at 14h00. 
Media wishing to cover the event are advised that the Minister of Health, Dr Joe Phaahla, will conduct a question-and-answer session with media immediately after the signing.
For media RSVPs, kindly contact Mr Terrence Manase from The Presidency Communications on 082 338 6707 and/or


Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President, on

Issued by: The Presidency

South Africa extends condolences to the people of Afghanistan

The South African Government has learnt with sadness of devastating floods in northern Afghanistan that have claimed more than 300 lives.

The Government and the people of South Africa stand in solidarity with those affected by this tragedy and laud the emergency rescue and medical personnel in their tireless rescue efforts.

South Africa extends heartfelt condolences to the people of Afghanistan following these flash floods and offers our deepest sympathy to those families who lost their loved ones as well as their homes. 

The thoughts of the South African people are with the people of Afghanistan. 


Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President, on

Issued by: The Presidency

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