by AKANI CHAUKE
JOHANNESBURG – PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has paid tribute to South Africans for uniting in the fight against the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic as it continues to spread at a relentless pace across the country.
He lauded political parties, church organisations and the corporate world for uniting behind the scourge a week after he declared a National State of Disaster as an urgent response to the outbreak.
These measures relate to the prohibition of gatherings of more than 100 people, restrictions on people entering the country, the closure of schools, the sale of alcohol and emergency procurement procedures in support of the fight against COVID-19.
“What we are witnessing is social solidarity in action, a defining feature of our nationhood,” Ramaohosa said.
“At times of crisis such as this one, it would be easy to surrender to the impulses of opportunism, greed and naked self-interest. History bears witness to the dark side of human nature that can be exposed when fear and panic takes hold.”
However, he said, South Africa had stood firm.
“As we navigate our way through the difficult times that lie ahead, we must continue in the spirit of empathy and selflessness and move with unity of purpose,” the president said.
Ramaphosa also said the manner in which all South Africans had taken charge of their own personal health and the health of those around them had been exemplary and heartening.
“Everywhere we see signs of behavioural change as the nation rallies behind infection control measures.
Ramaphosa expressed hope that South Africa would defeat the virus through unity and solidarity.
“It is these attributes of our national character that won us our democracy and it is what will ensure our victory over this pandemic,” he concluded.
South Africa’s confirmed cases of COVID-19 have exceeded 400 as of Monday.
– CAJ News