President Cyril Ramaphosa is celebrating his 70th birthday today with many South African wishing him well. But this is South Africa, so a fair few are also critical in their birthday messages to the president.
Born on November 17, 1952 in Johannesburg, Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa is South Africa’s fifth democratically elected president as well as leader of the African National Congress (ANC) since 2017.
He was previously an anti-apartheid activist, trade union leader and businessman. Ramaphosa served as secretary general to late ANC president Nelson Mandela, deputy president to former President Jacob Zuma, and chairman of the National Planning Commission from 2014 to 2018.
Ramaphosa and his family moved from Western Native Township to Soweto in 1962, where he attended Tshilidzi Primary School.
He completed high school at Mphaphuli High School in Sibasa, Venda, in 1971.
In December 2012, he was elected ANC deputy president at the governing party’s 53rd national conference in Mangaung.
He was appointed deputy president of the Republic of South Africa on May 25, 2014.
Ramaphosa was sworn-in as president of South Africa on Thursday, February 15, 2018 following Zuma’s resignation.
Birthday wishes pour in
On Wednesday, the Presidency invited South Africans to send a birthday message to Ramaphosa via hashtags #HappyBirthdayPresident #Ramaphosa70.
Many South Africans have responded with support for the president wishing him well while others were more critical saying he should retire.
Dr Tshego Abuti T-Man posted a comments about Phala Phala.
“Mr Phala Phala the money launderer. The worst president ever. The only president who gave white people food and starved his black people.”
However not all comments were bad, with others like Luvuyo Zideba genuinely wishing Ramphosa well.
“People president. Happy Birthday my president. When people say they can’t see anything good in you. Hug them and say life is difficult for the blind.”
Another Twitter, Revolutionary, also took a swipe at Cyril Ramaphosa’s predecessor who were so critical of President Cyril Ramaphosa earlier this month.
“Happy birthday President #Ramaphosa70 … you might not be perfect but we dodged the worse. Keep on keeping on.”
Best birthday gift
Meanwhile, Ramaphosa received an early birthday and Christmas present on Wednesday when the three-member panel to investigating the Phala Phala Game Farm heist asked National Assembly speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula for a two-week extension to their deadline which was granted.
While the extension has angered both the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) and the Democratic Alliance (DA), Ramaphosa will be “smiling all the way to the bank” as he heads in the 55th ANC elective conference in Nasrec on the 16th of December a happy man without parliament deliberating on the report.