Primary school and maternity close in Matutuíne
Times Live (File photo) / SA's Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.
South Africa’s Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has shot down a suggestion by the ANC Youth League that South Africa should build a massive wall on the border between Mozambique due to crime.
Ramaphosa was responding to questions in the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) on violence against foreigners.
Democratic Alliance NCOP delegate from Gauteng‚ Makashule Gana‚ had asked Ramaphosa whether he supported calls made by the African National Congress Youth League in KwaZulu-Natal‚ that the government builds a “huge wall” along the Mozambican border to prevent criminals from stealing vehicles and taking them across the border.
Ramaphosa’s comments came not long after the ANC Youth League called on him to not make himself available to be the next party president.
“On the issue that you raise on building of a wall. We are a nation that does not build walls. We do not believe in building walls‚ it defines who we are. We say South Africa is an open country and when people come here we must deal with them with dignity and respect and within parameters of our own constitution‚” said Ramaphosa.
Ramaphosa‚ who was answering questions in the parliament for the third time in as many weeks‚ added that building a wall wouldn’t come cheap.
“We will never subscribe to that. And besides‚ we don’t have money to build walls‚” said Ramaphosa.
Ramaphosa also defended the various “inter-ministerial task teams” set up by the government to find solutions against xenophobia.
Gana said it was not the first time foreign nationals were attacked in South Africa and every time it happens the government establishes an inter-ministerial task team.
“What makes you believe that this inter-ministerial team that minister (Jeff) Radebe is supposed to head will deliver different results? In 2015 there was no result‚” said Gana.
Ramaphosa said when the government sets up inter-ministerial committees‚ the real objective is to bring people together “who would otherwise be working in silos”.
“When bring them together you are breaking down those silos. If look at the way in the past we were able to curb and dowse down flames. This happened because of these types of structures. We are able to get our people in various formations to work together‚” said Ramaphosa.
Ramaphosa was also grilled on the national minimum wage and the government’s plans to rescue the poultry sector. He said the government would do everything in its powers to ensure that there are no factory closures and job losses in the poultry industry and defend it against “dumping” and unfair trade practices.Source: TMG Digital/Parliamentary Bureau