Wednesday, 6 October 2021


President Cyril Ramaphosa on Tuesday poked fun at his dark skin tone, admitting he “was too dark for people to see him” during a meeting of the extraordinary summit of the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) organ troika and Mozambique in Pretoria.

“I have been told I should stay where I am because I am just too dark and people do not see me properly when I stand over there,” Ramaphosa said to laughter from the audience he was due to address.

Ramaphosa, who was speaking in his capacity as the chair of the Sadc organ on politics, defence and security co-operation, was about to deliver his closing remarks during the summit when he made the lighthearted comments.

Earlier, he had made his opening remarks while standing behind the poorly lit podium which was a few steps away from where he was seated.

Later, while seated on a white leather chair with a blue and white Sadc backdrop, Ramaphosa quipped: “So you see my darkness has contributed to me having to sit here.”

He continued to make his closing remarks at the summit which agreed to extend the deployment of standby forces in Mozambique to continue combating acts of terrorism and violent extremists in the country’s Cabo Delgado province.

This is not the first time Ramaphosa has gone off script by making fun of himself. Three months ago, while making an announcement in Cape Town, he had a moment of panic when he could not locate his iPad.

On that day, Ramaphosa was due to announce that the National Ports Authority would become an independent subsidiary of Transnet, but he was briefly delayed because he was unable to find the device which contained his speech, bringing comic relief to the room.

After being introduced to the podium by acting presidency spokesperson Tyrone Seale, Ramaphosa said in jest: “I am looking for my iPad. Somebody stole my iPad.

“Somebody decided they want to dispossess me of my iPad, so I want that. Can I have my iPad please? They stole it.”

The iPad was later found.




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