Solving apartheid-era crimes & call for unity: 5 key takes from Ramaphosa's ANC NEC address

President Cyril Ramaphosa expressed concern at the lack of unity among the ANC's top leadership.
President Cyril Ramaphosa expressed concern at the lack of unity among the ANC's top leadership.
Image: GCIS

ANC leader Cyril Ramaphosa has reaffirmed the party's efforts to tackle outstanding apartheid-era crimes.

Ramaphosa, who was delivered his closing address on Tuesday at the ANC national executive committee (NEC) meeting, said many South Africans still had a great deal of trust and confidence in the ANC to do what is right.

Here are five key takes from his address.

Urgent attention to apartheid-era crimes

Ramaphosa said apartheid-era investigations, prosecutions and reparations needed urgent attention.

“We need to give closure and justice to families of victims of apartheid-era crimes. This has been an extremely difficult year for our country and for the South African people. As we prepare for a new year, there are many challenges that lie ahead.”

Truth and Reconciliation Commission

He noted the work being done to deal with outstanding matters stemming from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC).

“In just over a week’s time, the country will be celebrating Reconciliation Day. Among the important issues that we need to raise in this context are the outstanding matters of investigations, prosecutions and reparations from the TRC.”

Job creation and improving the conditions of the poor

Ramaphosa said the ANC was determined to harness its every energy, capabilities and resource to respond to all challenges faced by citizens.

“We are determined to overcome the coronavirus pandemic, to rebuild our economy, to create jobs and to improve the conditions of the poor and vulnerable. We can only do this if we are united and if we enjoy the confidence and support of the South African people.”

Covid and key focus areas

Some of the challenges that would receive more focus would include the government's approach to the Covid-19 pandemic, said Ramaphosa.

“We agreed that there are several issues on which we need to continue engagement, including a common approach to the Covid-19 pandemic, the crisis facing SOEs, the declaration of certain public holidays as non-trading days, energy security, the formation of an alliance economics task team and the local government candidate selection process.”

No unity in ANC at the moment

Ramaphosa expressed concern at the lack of unity in the ruling party's leadership.

“We must also acknowledge that there are some among us who, wittingly or unwittingly, contribute to a public discourse that is damaging to the unity and cohesion of the NEC and the movement.

“As we have said before, we need to desist from public statements that are at variance with the decisions of the structures of the ANC and which are likely to fuel division.”

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