Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) has urged newly-elected President Cyril Ramaphosa to get down to work immediately, and called on the new administration to urgently focus on a few critical areas.

Ramaphosa was sworn in as South Africa’s new President late on Thursday afternoon at Tuynhuys, the presidential office in Parliament, following the resignation of Jacob Zuma late on Wednesday.

BLSA chief executive, Bonang Mohale, said in a statement there is no time to celebrate.

Mohale said that the election of Ramaphosa as a new president represents a fresh opportunity to focus on the urgent task of growing the economy and putting people into jobs in order to address the key challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment especially among the youth. 

“Some public services are cases worse now than they were in 1994. The South African Revenue Service and the National Prosecuting Authority used to be our pride and joy, but now they are captured,” Mohale said.

“Our State-Owned Enterprises are bankrupt. We need to address the leadership, capital structure and governance issues gripping these SOEs. Now that we have Mr Zuma out of the way, and the terms of reference and regulations promulgated, enabling the Zondo Commission of Inquiry to be functional, we need it to be adequately resourced to begin its work of investigating state capture against key figures in the ANC’s senior leadership and in Mr Zuma’s cabinet.”

Mohale said that technically, the country has a leadership that is under prosecution, and they need to be offered an opportunity to account for their actions speedily.

“Finally, together with labour and civil society, business needs to stay engaged in economic policy making and efforts to jealously guard this democracy. We know only too well what happens when we abdicate this patriotic duty,” Mohale said.
“In business, the incoming administration, hopefully free of dead wood, incompetence and those facing corruption allegations, will find a willing and capable partner to help pull back our country from the brink of collapse.”

Mohale said BLSA stands ready to present its proposal on an emergency socio-economic recovery plan.
 – African News Agency (ANA)