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Ntsiki Mazwai lambasts Cyril Ramaphosa, amid COVID-19-induced lockdown in South Africa

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Prominent South African poet and social commentator, Ntsiki Mazwai took aim at Cyril Ramaphosa’s handling of the COVID-19 outbreak in South Africa, and aired a slew of other grievances about Ramaphosa’s past and business credentials. 

On Saturday, 28 March 2020, Ntsiki Mazwai, who is a controversial South African poet and social commentator known for regular verbal attacks targeted at both politicians and celebrities, took aim her latest target, South African president Cyril Ramaphosa.

In a scathing 869-word open letter, Mazawai laid into Ramaphosa, arguing that because Ramaphosa had not been held accountable for Marikana (in reference to the 2012 killing of 34 mineworkers by South African police), he “didn’t learn the lesson” (sic) and now he (Ramaphosa) “was about to repeat the mistake on a larger scale.”

The poet accused Ramaphosa of “putting money ahead” ahead of “his own people”, questioned his business associations; asserting those closest to him stood to benefit from the state-imposed 21-day lockdown, and that the poor and the vulnerable are likely to suffer from the lockdown.

Ntsiki Mazwai, however, did not address the public health merits of the lockdown, or the fact that many countries other South Africa have instituted the same COVID-19 lockdown measures in recent weeks and days.

You can read Ntsiki Mazwai’s open letter here.

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