South African leader Cyril Ramaphosa, on his own behalf and that of the people of South Africa, has apologised to President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and the people of Ghana over the recent xenophobic attacks in that country.
The anti-immigrant violence that rocked attacks on Pretoria and Johannesburg resulted in the death and injury of several African nationals, and the looting of their shops.
The message was conveyed to President Akufo-Addo on Tuesday by Jeffrey Thamsanqa Radebe, a South African Minister, when he called at the Presidency in Accra.
The communication expressed the revulsion of Mr Ramaphosa’s abhorrence at the turn of events.
“This is not in line with constitutional democracy, and it is an affront to the rule of law. President Ramaphosa has condemned the violence, and has instructed security agencies to leave no stone unturned in bringing all the perpetrators to book,” Mr Radebe said.
The South African Minister disclosed that President Ramaphosa had decided to cancel his participation in the United Nations General Assembly to deal with the matter, and ensure it did not escalate.
He touched on the importance of the historic relations between the two countries and indicated that “What has happened should not stand in the way of closer cooperation between Ghana and South Africa.”
With President Akufo-Addo being the first President to pay a state visit to South Africa upon the assumption of office of President Ramaphosa, Minister Radebe said this was evidence of “the high regard he has for you and the people of Ghana, and the role played in the liberation of the Continent from colonialism and imperialism.”
He said this backed President Ramaphosa’s decision to pay a reciprocal visit to Ghana in December 2018, and revealed also that modalities for the waiving of visa requirements for nationals of the two countries were being finalised.
President Akufo-Addo thanked Mr Radebe for President Ramaphosa’s “exceptional gesture,” adding; “It is a courageous act on his part to apologise on behalf of the people of South Africa for the actions of the perpetrators of the violence.”
The apology, the President stated, “is accepted in good faith,” and expressed the hope that the “authors of the violence will be apprehended, and will face justice.”
President Akufo-Addo was confident that there would continue to exist opportunities for stronger ties of cooperation between the two countries and assured President Ramaphosa of Ghana’s commitment to realising the vision of a united Africa.
“We have been the marginalized people for too long, and we must stick together so we can have our day in the sun soon,” he added.
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