Motsepe apologises for telling Trump Africa loves him

‘I do not have the right to speak on behalf of anybody except myself’.
Image: Moneyweb
 

South African billionaire Patrice Motsepe apologised for telling U.S. President Donald Trump that Africa loves him, but warned the growing perception that the continent is anti-America may hamper investment.

Motsepe’s remarks to Trump at a business dinner during the World Economic Forum in Davos last week sparked a debate among his countrymen who questioned his right to speak on behalf of the continent.

“I have a duty to listen to these differing views and would like to apologise,” Motsepe, the country’s only black billionaire and a brother-in-law of President Cyril Ramaphosa, said in an emailed statement Tuesday. “I do not have the right to speak on behalf of anybody except myself.”

The American leader has not always endeared himself to the continent. Two years ago, he was reported to have referred to African nations as “shithole countries.” Last week, it emerged that he’s considering a proposal to extend travel restrictions to four African countries, including Nigeria.

Motsepe said he has worked with political, business and other leaders whose views and policies he doesn’t necessarily share, and continues to do so.

His remarks last week were partly aimed at encouraging discussion between the Trump administration and African leaders and “particularly in the context of the increasing feedback from certain American political and business leaders that South Africa and some African countries are anti-America and its political leadership,” Motsepe said. “This perception has had an impact on our ability to attract foreign investments and create jobs.”

The continent has to create about 8 million new jobs for its youth every year, and South Africa, where half of those aged 15 to 24 are unemployed, has to generate more than of 500,000 new posts, according to Motsepe’s statement.

“Africa and America to a very large extent share common values and principles and have greater mutual interest than the issues or policies on which they disagree or have different views,” he said. “It is in the interest of South Africa and the rest of the African continent to build mutually beneficial socio-political, trade, investment and cultural ties between the economies and people of Africa and America and Africa and the world.”

© 2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Get access to Moneyweb's financial intelligence and support quality journalism for only
R63/month or R630/year.
Sign up here, cancel at any time.

COMMENTS   9

You must be signed in to comment.

SIGN IN SIGN UP

Brilliant move…
It easier to ask for forgiveness than permission… naughty boy.

Hell-grow a pair of balls for heaven’s sake.
When it gets too hot in the kitchen you back-track.

Have to stay politically correct or we might offend someone………….

Yes, what a wimp,

he would does business with whom ever..clearly some of these aren’t so “progressive” and clearly own him!!

Donald Trump would like to know your location.

What makes this cringing and begging sycophant think he can go and speak in my name and millionos of other independent minded Africans with respect to where we stand on Trump. If, he wants to grovel and walk on all-fours infrong of Trump and even lick his boots or whatever else, he is free go do that – millions of politicians do that every day, but leave me out of it. I don’t like your patron period. So, get off where you need to get off and stay there. Goodness gracious, the audecity and gall of it all. Go to every country in Africa and do a finger test, you will find most people with with their middle finger up for this ‘there is enough blame go go to both sides’ self declared Nationalist.

I want to know why you and the ANC government support the Middle East (Iran) over the US. What have the Islamic states ever done for South Africa? Nothing!

Both play the grand victim card perpetually.

Unfortunately MW censored and or refused to print my response. That is that – that’s how ‘free press’ sometimes work. Perfectly legitimate thoughts are refused the light of day, for whatever reason.

End of comments.

LATEST CURRENCIES  

USD / ZAR
GBP / ZAR
EUR / ZAR

Podcasts

NEWSLETTERS WEB APP SHOP PORTFOLIO TOOL TRENDING CPD HUB

Follow us:

Search Articles:Advanced Search
Click a Company: