President Cyril Ramaphosa has called on business, labour as well as South African citizens, to mobilise all resources to address poverty, inequality and unemployment, as the country embarks on a new era, key to which would be forging an ethical state free of corruption.
“Let us forge a compact for an efficient, capable and ethical state, a state that is free of corruption, for companies that generate social value and propel human development, for elected officials and public servants who faithfully serve no other cause than that of our people. We must be a society that values excellence, rewards effort and rejects mediocrity,” he said.
Acknowledging that the road ahead will be difficult, the President said the entire society would have to use courage, wisdom and perseverance to “achieve the South Africa we want.”
The President was addressing the country, shortly after being inaugurated as the sixth democratically elected President of the Republic.
The inauguration was held at the Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pretoria, on Saturday, under the theme: ‘Together Celebrating Democracy: Renewal and Growth for a Better South Africa’.
“Let us forge a compact for growth and economic opportunity, for productive lands and viable communities, for knowledge, for innovation, and for services that are affordable, accessible and sustainable,” President Ramaphosa said.
He said South Africa must be a society that values its young people by creating a conducive environment for them to gain skills and be productively employed to develop our country.
“Let us celebrate the great strides we have made – demonstrated so clearly in the incoming Parliament – to raise the prominence and contribution of women in public life.
“Let us work together to fundamentally, and forever, change the relations of power between men and women. Let us end the dominion that men claim over women, the denial of opportunity, the abuse and the violence, the neglect, and the disregard of each person’s equal rights,” he said.
The President said South Africa should build a society that protects and values those who are vulnerable and who for too long have been rendered marginal.
“A society where disability is no impediment, where there is tolerance, and where no person is judged on their sexual orientation, where no person suffers prejudice because of the colour of their skin, the language of their birth or their country of origin.
“Let us preserve our natural resources for future generations, as we work with greater purpose to end the human destruction of our world,” he said.