- President Cyril Ramaphosa has unveiled a new statue of struggle veteran Oliver Tambo at the airport that shares his name
- Ramaphosa lauded Tambo as the 'architect' of SA's freedom during a ceremony to honour the longest-serving ANC president
- In addition to the statue, Ramaphosa unveiled a new R950 million hotel constructed by the Radisson Hotel Group
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President Cyril Ramaphosa unveiled a statue seeking to honour the legacy of struggle veteran Oliver Tambo on Tuesday.
The statue is situated outside OR Tambo International Airport in Gauteng and is the second of its kind. The first was unveiled by former president Jacob Zuma.
The month of October has been declared by the City of Ekurhuleni as OR Tambo Month and the nine-metre tall bronze statue of OR Tambo will be unveiled exactly 103 years since the birth of the globally respected leader.
The president commented that the struggle veteran and longest-serving ANC president was the international voice of the nation's liberation movement:
"To the world, OR Tambo was the voice of South Africa’s liberation movement. He articulated the aspirations of every South African man, woman and child who yearned for freedom. His name was known around the world, from Oslo to London, from Accra to Moscow."
Tambo, continued Ramaphosa, was the architect of South Africa's freedom, and the president felt it was fitting that the new statue is erected at the airport:
"Oliver Tambo was the architect of our freedom... It is, therefore, most fitting that this statue has been erected here at this airport that bears his name, and that is a gateway to the continent and to the world."
In addition to the statue, Ramaphosa unveiled the new Radisson Hotel and Convention Centre. The centre cost a staggering R950 million to construct and boasts 248 rooms and state-of-the-art facilities.
Ramaphosa explained that the hotel will form part of the plan to see Ekurhuleni reaching new heights:
"The hotel, which is scheduled to open its doors to the public on 2 November 2020, will debut the Radisson Hotel Group’s fourth brand, the upscale Radisson, in South Africa and is one of the key projects and catalysts towards the realisation of the City of Ekurhuleni’s 30-year Aerotropolis Masterplan.
"This plan seeks to transform the city into a global logistics hub with OR Tambo International as the springboard."
Earlier, Briefly.co.za reported that Ramaphosa had detailed his economic recovery plan in Parliament earlier this month.
The plan covers four key interventions, namely a focus on infrastructure, energy generation capacity, employment and an industrial growth drive to boost a flagging manufacturing industry.
In addition to these interventions, Ramaphosa announced an extension for the Special Covid-19 Grant for a further three months to 'provide support to those in society who continue to face hunger and distress'.
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