Prime Minister Ramaphosa praises ANC’s record to mark 30 years of South African democracy | Nelson Mandela News

President Cyril Ramaphosa has praised South Africa’s achievements under the party’s leadership as the country celebrates 30 years of democracy since the end of apartheid.

April 27th is the day when the shackles were removed. The bell of freedom has rang throughout our great country,” Ramaphosa, 71, said on Saturday, reminding South Africans of the first democratic elections in 1994 that ended white minority rule.

“Democracy in South Africa is still young. What we have achieved in the last 30 short years is something we should all be proud of. This is a much better place than it was 30 years ago,” Pretoria said. He made the remarks in a speech commemorating Freedom Day at the Union Buildings, the government’s headquarters.

South African President Cyril Ramposa speaks during the Freedom Day celebrations in Pretoria, South Africa. [Themba Hadebe/AP]

The first comprehensive election saw a landslide victory for the previously banned African National Congress (ANC) party, making its leader Nelson Mandela the country’s first black president four years after his release from prison.

The ANC’s landslide victory resulted in a new constitution, which became South Africa’s supreme law, guaranteeing equality for all, regardless of race, religion or sexuality.

The ANC has been in power since 1994 and its role in the liberation of South Africans is still recognized, but for some it is no longer the same as poverty and economic inequality remain widespread. It is not celebrated as such.

ANC is struggling in the polls

Prime Minister Ramaphosa used the opportunity to enumerate improvements brought forward by the ANC, which is struggling in the polls scheduled for May 29 and is at risk of losing a full parliamentary majority for the first time.

“We have promoted land reform and distributed millions of hectares of land to people who have been forcibly dispossessed,” he said.

“We have built homes, clinics, hospitals, roads, bridges, dams and many other facilities. We have brought electricity, water and sanitation to millions of South African homes. Ta.”

NDMT’s Jonah Hull, reporting from the capital Pretoria, said while there was freedom of speech, many South Africans would say there was no economic freedom.

“The unemployment rate in this country is 32 percent. The World Bank describes this society as the most unequal on earth,” Hull said.

“Corruption is rampant. Infrastructure is in a dire state and polls predict that the ANC’s vote share could drop below 50% for the first time in next month’s elections. , which in itself would be a pretty significant milestone for this country.”

People listen to President Cyril of South Africa.
People listen to South African President Cyril’s speech through a screen during Freedom Day celebrations in Pretoria, South Africa (right). [Themba Hadebe/AP]

An Ipsos poll released on Friday showed that the ruling party’s approval rating, which won more than 57% of the vote in the last national election in 2019, has fallen to just over 40%.

If the vote share falls below 50%, the ANC will be forced to find a coalition partner to remain in power.

The party’s image has been badly damaged by corruption allegations and its inability to effectively tackle the still staggeringly high problems of poverty, crime, inequality and unemployment.

The ruling party is largely blamed for the lack of progress in improving the lives of so many South Africans.

Thandeka Mvakali, 28, who lives in Johannesburg’s Alexandra township, said her life was no different from her parents’ days during apartheid.

“It’s about the same. As you can see, we live in a one-bedroom, there’s probably 10 people in the house, for my family, we’re 10 people, but maybe two people work. like my mother [and] He is my brother,” Mwakali told NDMT.

“All of us are out of work. We went to school, but there are no jobs in South Africa.”

Mvakali added that he plans to vote for the first time in the May 29 election as he “hopes” that his vote will count this time.

President Ramaphosa acknowledged the problem but accused critics of deliberately “turning a blind eye”.

“We have made a lot of progress and are determined to do more,” he said.

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