Herman Mashaba on Biden's victory: 'A profound reminder that every vote matters'
Action SA president Herman Mashaba said he hoped US president-elect Joe Biden will unite Americans, bridge social divides and build a more inclusive society.
Mashaba made this comment when he congratulated Biden, and US vice president-elect Kamala Harris, for their historic election victory on Saturday.
The Democrat Party candidate won the race to become the next US president, defeating Donald Trump after a nail-biting vote count after Tuesday's election.
“The election is not only historic for seeing the first woman — a woman of colour — elected to the office of vice-president, but for the historic turnout from Americans who went to the polls to cast their vote,” Mashaba said.
He said over 144m Americans cast their votes in the 2020 presidential election, with Biden currently holding a 4m vote margin over President Donald Trump.
“This demonstrates the power of the often silent majority to take political power into their hands, and hold politicians accountable for their actions.
“At a time in SA history where we are seeing an increasing number of voters become disillusioned by the political system and abstain from voting, the events in the US this week serve as a profound reminder that every single vote matters,” Mashaba said.
Nigel Green CEO of deVere Group, a financial advisory organisation, said Biden will deliver a boost to global stock markets and the US and world economy.
“Although a Biden win was pretty much priced-in by the markets, his victory will eliminate uncertainty — which they loathe — and they will rally further as a result,” Green said.
He said investors would be focusing on the renewed certainty and stability that a Biden White House will bring, including in key areas such as trade tensions with China, keeping the US in the World Health Organisation, re-signing the Paris climate agreement, and abiding by other international agreements.
“As the world’s largest economy, sustainable, long-term growth in the US will have a positive ripple effect for the world economy,” Green said.
350.org, an international environmental organisation, said climate change was a critical area of concern to US voters, with seven in 10 voters supporting government action to address the climate crisis.
It said Biden and Harris have recognised this, making clear commitments on climate action and environmental justice.
“The US must now prove it can be taken seriously in the climate change fight by immediately re-entering the Paris Agreement, humbly working with global leaders on bolder climate ambitions and a global just recovery from Covid-19, and domestically taking rapid steps towards bold, comprehensive climate action,” said May Boeve, 350.org executive director.
Boeve said the US must shift finance flows out of a fossil-fuelled past and towards solutions that will help secure a liveable future for all.
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