President Cyril Ramaphosa Says South Africa Has Changed for the Better at Freedom Day Address in Middleburg

President Cyril Ramaphosa Says South Africa Has Changed for the Better at Freedom Day Address in Middleburg

  • President Cyril Ramaphosa's Freedom Day address highlighted the many highs and lows the country faces
  • He told South Africans they should to move forward from the past troubles and look forward to a bright tomorrow
  • Following the address, South Africans shared their disheartened thoughts regarding Freedom Day in the country

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MPUMALANGA - Nation-building and reconciliation are ongoing, these were the words echoed by President Cyril Ramaphosa during his Freedom Day address to thousands in Middelburg, Mpumalanga on Wednesday 27 April.

South Africans have enjoyed the “fruits of freedom” for 28 years and this year’s celebration was held under the theme “Consolidate our democratic gains.” Several pertinent topics were highlighted in the President’s speech while he also included how life has improved for citizens.

President Cyril Ramaphosa, Freedom Day, address, Middleburg, South Africa
President Cyril Ramaphosa said that a lot has changed in the country during his Freedom Day address. Image: Phill Magakoe/Getty
Source: Getty Images

Ramaphosa said that post-apartheid 81% of people have formal houses, nine out of 20 people have clean water, 85% of citizens have electricity and basic education and health care are accessible to all citizens.

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He also encouraged South Africans to move forward from the past and added that the government is working to improve the living conditions for those in poverty, according to TimesLIVE.

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Ramaphosa’s speech touched on issues such as gender-based violence and crime in the country. He said crime and violence can only be defeated if South Africans worked together. Another issue he raised was the violence against foreigners which he said there is no room for in the country. Adding that people who come into the country legally, have a right to be in South Africa.

According to News24, he also discussed the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and the recent floods.

He also said there are many sceptics who questioned if Freedom Day is worth celebrating but the country has achieved so much. Ramaphosa admitted that there is much further for the country to go.

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South Africans not please with Freedom Day comments

@reterblanche said:

“And still using the bucket system, walking long distances for water.”

@eva_morobe wrote:

“Tasted a rotten fruit. Unfortunately, we still don't own the tree of that fruit.”

@Claire53152859 commented:

“Are you kidding me? 1994 no loadshedding, high employment. Crime was basically non-existent. Things worked and stuff was maintained. We can all agree apartheid was evil and it's good it was abolished. But the ANC has wrecked things. Fact!”

@wrchetty posted:

“Why do you keep comparing now to before 1994. Everyone knows democracy is better than apartheid. What about comparing today to every year after apartheid? Because it's evident that every year is worse than the previous.”

@TraceyleeG6 added:

“He's as delusional as his predecessor. Higher poverty than pre-1994. Higher unemployment than pre-1994. The education of children is substandard as opposed to pre-1994. Our fiscal world ranking is lower than pre-1994. We have more debt than pre-1994.”

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Mzansi citizens share Freedom Day feels, some not feeling so free: “celebrating R350 and unemployment”

Briefly News also reported with Freedom Day representing a new beginning for the people of South Africa, namely those of colour, it should be a day filled with joy and triumph… but it doesn’t seem that was the sentiment.

The people of Mzansi fought hard for a free country and a new beginning, however, the life they are living today does not feel all that free.

Briefly News posed the question on Facebook, asking our followers: “How do you celebrate this day?” The answers we received were not the cheerful responses we expected. The people of Mzansi made it clear that they do not feel free.

Source: Briefly News

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