‘Be vigilant’ – Ramaphosa warns of ‘systemic fightback campaigns’ over ICJ ruling
Ramaphosa says some countries are blaming South Africa for using the very same court they set up in the Israel matter.
President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: African National Congress/X
President Cyril Ramaphosa has warned that although South Africa did the right thing by hauling Israel to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over its Gaza bombing, it will not be without pushback from those opposing the case.
In its judgment last Friday, the court ordered Israel to take immediate measures to enable the provision of basic services and humanitarian assistance in the Gaza Strip.
While South Africa’s case was welcomed by countries including, Malaysia, Bolivia, Namibia and Pakistan, some, including Germany and the US were in support of Israel.
Ramaphosa: Be vigilant
Delivering closing remarks at the ANC NEC Lekgotla on Tuesday, Ramaphosa said the ICJ ruling would have an impact on South Africa’s situation.
“As we reflect on this matter, we must be mindful that our success has not only exposed the atrocities that have been carried out by the state of Israel but also the moral bankruptcy of those countries who, by their acts of omission or commission, are allowing genocide to take place in Gaza on their watch. We say this humbly without pointing fingers,” said Ramaphosa.
“We’re also conscious that there will be systematic fight-back campaigns as well. I say this so that we’re aware of it. There can be little doubt that these forces will do all in their power to prevent South Africa from concluding its case on the merits of the matter and the ICJ. Speaking to the lawyers, I find them ready, willing and prepared to take this case forward to its final conclusion.
“The fight-back may also focus on our domestic politics and our electoral outcomes in order to pursue a regime change agenda.
“While we have done what we believe was driven by our conscience and principles. While we also went and did the right thing and take this matter to the courts that were set up by those who were there, we’re being blamed for taking the matter to the very court that they set up.
“We didn’t take the case to a kangaroo court, the very court that they themselves set up in terms of the rules that they set up and we should not be blamed for doing so.”
The president further thanked South Africans who supported the case, and called on them to be vigilant ahead of the elections.
“We thank all South Africans who came out in their hundreds of thousands to support the just cause of the Palestinian people. We commend the legal team that worked hard and those who worked behind the scenes to make sure that our government’s case is well represented and we have thanked Ministers Pandor and Lamola for their key roles.
“We need to be absolutely vigilant and resolute.”