President Cyril Ramaphosa has, as Commander-In-Chief of the armed forces, lauded the work done by members of the South African National Defence Force.
Ramaphosa says the SANDF continues to ensure that there is stability in the country. He was addressing members of the SANDF in Richard’s Bay in KwaZulu-Natal.
He was speaking at the annual commemoration of the death of over 600 black South African troops who died on the SS Mendi when it collided with the steamship, Darro in the English Channel.
The soldiers were to be deployed to the frontlines of the First World War in France.
Meanwhile the wreath laying ceremony was not open to members of the public, local resident Ntokozo Mthembu managed to catch a glimpse of President Cyril Ramaphosa at the war memorial in Empangeni.
“It was lovely to see the president with the SANDF behind him he took his time to come in it is a beautiful day for, we saw soldiers are people that are approachable, helping and the art that they show us, we love that about them they made sure we see they are here to help us as a country there is an element to of them giving a helping hand to the community as well.”
As thousands of people flocked to the KwaZulu-Natal north coast in the last week as part of the build-up to Armed Forces Day today in Richards Bay, it’s provided a much needed boost for the town’s hospitality industry.
Armed Forces Day honours the work of SANDF members in service and to commemorate those who have fallen in the line of duty.
This morning, President Cyril Ramaphosa laid a wreath at a World War Two monument in nearby Empangeni. “Grateful to the president of the Republic of South Africa as Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces and the entire department of the Defense Force for having decided to host the Armed Forces Day here in the city of Umhlathuze in 2023, I’m sure and happy that especially in the tourism industry we have actually been boosted economically and we are grateful for that and also the fact that by the army being here it has maximised security to our residents,” says Umhlathuze mayor, Xolani Ngwezi.
Live: President Cyril Ramaphosa’s keynote address at the commemoration of the Armed Forces Day
SABC news reporter: Zoleka Qodashe
Original Story by www.sabcnews.com