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S/Africa needs to rebuild economy with urgency – Ramaphosa

South Africa is not only rebuilding after the destruction of the past week but it is also “rebuilding after the…

South Africa is not only rebuilding after the destruction of the past week but it is also “rebuilding after the devastation of decades of dispossession and exploitation,” President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Monday.In his weekly message to the nation following the worst unrest since the end of apartheid, Ramaphosa said the events of the past week “are a stark reminder of how deep the problems are and how far we still have to go.”

“These events must propel us to act with greater purpose and speed,” Ramaphosa said.

He noted that the unrest resulted in the deaths of 212 people and looting of public and private property, destruction of millions of dollars’ worth of infrastructure and the suspension of essential services in Kwazulu-Natal and Gauteng provinces.

“As we work to stabilise the country and secure essential supplies and infrastructure, we must work together to mitigate the effects of this unrest on society’s most vulnerable,” the president said.

Ramaphosa spoke of the importance of transforming the economy, creating jobs and sharing in the country’s wealth to lift millions of South Africans out of poverty.

“We need to fundamentally transform our economy and our society, deepening our efforts to create employment, lift millions out of poverty and ensure that the country’s wealth is shared among all its people,” he said.

The South African leader encouraged businesses to provide employee wellness and other support to staff who have been affected by the violence.

“We are called upon to help with food relief and support businesses in distress.

“We are called upon to join small volunteer teams to help clean up affected communities if we are able to do so, all the while mindful of the pandemic and what we must do to keep safe,” the president said.

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