Cyril Ramaphosa Asserts African Independence and Rejects Beggar Stereotypes

In a powerful speech delivered during the New Global Financial Pact Summit in Paris on 22-23rd June, Cyril Ramaphosa, the President of South Africa, boldly proclaimed that Africans are not beggars in reference to the recent peace missing undertaken by seven African Presidents and Heads of States to Ukraine and Russia. President Ramaphosa in his meaningful statement gave a resounding call for recognition of African nations as equal partners in global financial cooperation and a rejection of harmful stereotypes that have plagued the continent for far too long.

While referring to the peace mission and the fact that graines must be allowed in the market, the president declared “We were all at one, that even if we were going to address an issue of a war which has had a negative impact on the African continent, which is rise in prices for foods, rise in price for fertilizers, we were clear that we were not going there as beggars”. “We are not going to ask for a favor to both Ukraine and Russia. Were were going there to say open up the Black Sea Channel so that the grains and the fertilizers should go into the world market” he added.

The president’s remarks resonated with leaders and attendees at the summit, shining a light on Africa’s economic potential and the need for equitable collaboration in international financial systems.

During his address, President Ramaphosa refuted the persistent notion that Africa is perpetually in need of external aid and assistance. He emphasized that African nations are not beggars but rather sovereign entities with immense economic potential. Ramaphosa highlighted the vast natural resources, diverse talent pool, and entrepreneurial spirit that exist across the continent, emphasizing that Africa has much to offer the global economy.

The statement comes days after allegations surfaced that Mykhailo Podolyak an advisor to the Ukrainian president declared that African leaders had neither capability nor the power to get involved in matters they knew nothing about. Statement which the alleged author denied since.

Also read: Nigeria: The Central Bank unifies exchange rates

By challenging the beggar stereotype, Ramaphosa aimed to reframe the narrative surrounding Africa’s economic position and foster a sense of agency and self-determination among African nations. He called for a shift in perspective, urging the international community to view Africa as an investment opportunity rather than a mere recipient of aid.

President Ramaphosa also stressed the importance of African-led financial cooperation as a means to drive sustainable economic development on the continent. He underscored the need for increased investment in infrastructure, human capital, and technological advancements to unlock Africa’s full potential with a specific focus on the Inga dam which he referred to as a mega project which can generate up to seventy thousand megawatts and serve twelve to fifteen counties.

Ramaphosa advocated for a more balanced approach to financial partnerships, one that promotes mutual benefit and respects the agency of African nations. He encouraged greater collaboration between African governments, international financial institutions, and private sector entities, fostering an environment conducive to innovation, trade, and job creation.

In his speech, President Ramaphosa highlighted the critical need for inclusive financial systems that promote financial literacy, inclusion, and access to capital for all Africans. He emphasized that empowering African citizens with the necessary financial tools and knowledge is essential for achieving sustainable development and reducing economic inequality.

Ramaphosa called for increased investment in digital infrastructure and technology, enabling Africans to participate fully in the global digital economy. He emphasized the transformative potential of financial technology and transportation infrastructures in fostering financial inclusion and propelling economic growth across the continent.

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