- President Cyril Ramaphosa has reiterated that the needs of South African citizens ought to be put first
- Ramaphosa was engaging political parties during a national assembly following the sensational outcomes at the polls
- Ramaphosa said the national government will lend municipalities assistance to ensure they fulfil their responsibilities
- South Africans on social media tore into the president's remarks and questioned his supposed sudden about-turn
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CAPE TOWN - President Cyril Ramaphosa is requesting leaders from all the parties to put the needs of South Africans beyond their own or those of politics.
His comments are thought to have been sparked by the sensational outcomes from the local government elections, where the African National Congress (ANC) walked away as anything but the behemoth party of recent times.
"ANC is funny": Mzansi finds it odd that the ANC says it will assess service delivery in Gauteng after loss
In response to how the government hopes to ensure stability, Ramaphosa, first making a huge concession, told Members of Parliament (MPs) the outcome of the elections showed the country was finding its power.
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IOL reported that from the eight metros in the country, the governing party only has an outright majority ruling over Buffalo City in the Eastern Cape and Mangaung in the Free State.
Accepting the tide has turned
ANC scraped through at the last minute to salvage KwaZulu-Natal's eThekwini after Abantu Batho Congress, among other smaller parties, banded with the party in an alliance.
"We must accept what citizens have shown they want regardless of [our feelings]. The country has not experienced the most favourable minority rule at a local government level, but we must now make it work," Ramaphosa said.
“For the sake of the country, we must ensure that the new coalition governments provide the services that people need. Ultimately, this, among others, will depend on the commitment, and capabilities of those running these municipalities,” he said.
Ramaphosa reiterated that the national government will support all local councils to ensure they fulfil their mandate, which is to serve the people.
Citizens lambaste Ramaphosa's 'late epiphany'
There was an air of skepticism surrounding the views expressed by South Africans, who took to social media to question Ramaphosa's optimistic stance.
Briefly News jumps into and brings readers all the reactions below.
"That's not what has been happening since he took office. It was always the other way around. What changed his mind?"
"Hhhhhm is he coming to his senses?"
"Dankie Ramaphosa, Zuma once said ANC comes first then the country follow."
"Only now? It was party first and citizens and SA last until the voters said, 'VOETSEK ANC!'"
New DA Tshwane mayor urges parties to 'bury the hatchet'
Elsewhere, Briefly News recently reported that as the reality of the ANC's astonishing tumble from power sinks in, the Democratic Alliance (DA) is gearing up for five years of governance in the Tshwane metro.
Briefly News understands Williams was re-elected unopposed, while the DA’s Katlego Mathebe, who was also unopposed, retained his office as speaker.
The former has called for political parties to put their differences aside to ensure adequate services are rendered to citizens.
SABC News reported that the ANC wavered its option to submit its candidate for the mayoral position, with Tshwane having been among the many hung municipalities across the country.