Minister Maropene Ramokgopa on 2023 Africa Day

25 May 2023

Our most powerful tool as a continent is the unity of Africa

The Minister in the Presidency for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Maropene Ramokgopa, joins the rest of the African continent in celebrating the 60th anniversary of the unity of Africans. In 2020, South Africa again took over the Chairship of the AU under the leadership of President Cyril Matamela Ramaphosa.

During South Africa’s tenure as Chair, the AU achieved several key priorities that includes the historic advent of the free trade within the African Continental Free Trade Area, the convening of the 14th Extraordinary Summit on Silencing the Guns to review progress made in the implementation of the Agenda 2063 flagship programme on Silencing the Guns by 2020, and the resolute support to address the challenges of the COVID-19.

“During this tenure we witnessed a more unified African Union through strengthening multilateralism, increased solidarity and decisive to facilitate the realization of goals espoused in the AU 2063 Agenda that aims to ensure we build the Africa that we all want,” commented Minister Ramokgopa.

These achievements are consistent with the commitment of South Africa’s 6th administration to contribute in Building A better Africa and World. The strategic components under this priority include economic growth through the tourism sector, increased regional integration and trade, equitable multilateral institutions, enhanced global governance, and a peaceful and secure continent.

All these components form the building blocks towards the realization of the African Union’s 2063 Vision. A vision that was marshaled by one of South Africa’s daughters and the former Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Dr. Nkosazana Dlaminin Zuma.

This years’ Africa Month is celebrated under the theme: “Deepening the AU Vision for Unity for Africa through Prosperity, Peace and Modernity for a Better Africa and a Better World.” “We must continue to cultivate and celebrate the strides made by the AU and Africa broadly in harnessing the economic, human, cultural and natural treasures of our continent, said Minister Ramokgopa.

Minister Ramokgopa continued to say, “We need to capitalize on the transformative mandate of the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement (AfCFTA) to unite us all towards a shared continental interest that will accelerate trade and investment, harness innovation and creativity, and improve the livelihoods of our people”.

South Africa continues to contribute to the rapid infrastructure development of Africa. President Ramaphosa is the Coordinating Champion and currently leads the Presidential Infrastructure Champion Initiative (PICI) in which Minister Maropene Ramokgopa supports at a coordination level. The PICI aims to accelerate regional infrastructure development through the political championing of projects.

South Africa is leading four projects namely the Beitbridge Border Post, the Grand Inga III Hydropower Project, Lesotho Highlands Water Project, and making South Africa the hub for the manufacture and supply of Rail Stock for Africa in accordance with the AU Resolution. “Our most powerful tool as a continent is the unity of Africa. Without unity and a sense of solidarity we will not be able to fully explore our potential to accelerate development for our people and the world,” Minister Maropene Ramokgopa added.

The Minister is of the view that it is necessary to build on the unity that was started 60 years ago to achieve other milestones that will allow for the building of a stronger Africa. “ We must be relentless in unifying Africa towards a common vision to develop our people and the world.

South Africa reaffirms its commitment to improving peace, security and stability on the Continent by fully complying with external peace missions, rescue operations and humanitarian assistance operations. A unified Africa, is a peaceful Africa”, said Minister Ramokgopa. Minister Ramokgopa wishes all Africans a “Happy Africa Day maAfrika borwa a ratagang.”

For media enquiries related to the Department contact:
Mr Lawrence Ngoveni
Acting Chief Director: Strategy and Communications, Department of Planning Monitoring and Evaluation
E-mail: 082 824 3060

For media engagements with Minister Maropene Ramokgopa contact:
Ms Keitumetse Fatimata Moutloatse
Media Liaison Officer: Ministry in the Presidency for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation
Cell: 073 532 6161

More on: