It was not out of the kindness of FW de Klerk’s heart, it was not because he felt sorry for Nelson Mandela, it was not because he was a kind-hearted man, it was because of the pressure and the struggles that the people of our country waged to enable Nelson Mandela to be released. It was your victory.— President Cyril Ramaphosa
Speaking at the 30th anniversary of the release of former President Nelson Mandela from Victor Verster prison after spending 27 years in prison, President Cyril Ramaphosa said it was not the kindness of FW de Klerk that led to release of Mandela.
The statement by Ramaphosa sparked a debate on social media and callers on the Eusebius McKaiser Show had mixed reactions to the statement.
I am not shocked, I am happy that the man is revealing his true colours. Guys like Ramaphoasa are those guys who wait for you to fail and they don't alert you and they come tomorrow and they claim victory. He is traitor and he waits for an opportunity and he is calculative.— Aubrey, Caller
I was very shocked by what the president said. I thought he was being populist there. I didn't expect that from a head of state.— Thabo, Caller
Some of the callers say they have lost respect for Ramaphosa.
I've had a lot of respect for Ramaphosa but this is not him speaking. He comes out as a considerate person. I am shocked, this is not him.— Marcel, Caller
I am finding the president that I always loved to be a coward, he is very weak. I loved this president but he slips every now and then.— Bongani, Caller
Here are some reactions from Twitter about the topic:
I think Ramaphosa is responding to De Clerk interview when he said the apartheid govt had the strongest army here Africa and there could have been worse bloodshed if they continued— Thabani Fuyana (@fuyana_thabani) February 12, 2020
@Eusebius De Klerk had OPTIONS. He could have decided differently. Simple as that. He's a politician, politicians are strategic and self serving... it's their jobs to ensure their own survival.— Odile Robertson (Mackett) (@OdileRobertson) February 12, 2020
@CyrilRamaphosa told the truth about the release of Madiba - he was under pressure from all sides and he wasn't being kind. I agree with most, he (Vho-Matamela) is usually not one to go that far and that's what perhaps has shocked many people. @Eusebius #702OpenLine— Nkosi (@nkosi___) February 12, 2020
@Eusebius a murderous criminal surrendering because the net has closed in, is NOT doing it for the sake of humanity, OR from the “goodness” of their heart!! 🙄😴😴— DJ Fresh (Big Dawg) (@DJFreshSA) February 12, 2020
@Eusebius I’m shocked by what the president said, it certainly not like him, he even sounds like Malema. However I agree with what he said, De Klerk was under pressure— Lesego Gaegane (@lesego1003) February 12, 2020
Listen to the full open line below...