Democracy comes at a price, says Ramaphosa

2015-03-08 06:00

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Democracy comes with a price tag, according to Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.

“Elections don’t come cheap these days. Elections all over the world are expensive activities, and they have to be funded,” the former businessman told reporters in Maseru on Thursday.

“Every government that practises democracy should know they should budget for when people of the country go to elect their leaders.”

Ramaphosa led the Southern African Development Community’s mediation efforts in Lesotho following the alleged attempted coup against former prime minister Thomas Thabane.

According to an agreement reached under his mediation, Lesotho moved its scheduled elections forward by two years and these were held last month.

Ramaphosa was asked if the R220?million the Lesotho government had to find for the elections was worth it.

He said the Mountain Kingdom reappropriated money from other government programmes to fund the elections, also making sure service delivery wasn’t affected.

“Democracy has a price, unfortunately. We live in an era where democracy has to be paid for.

“And the end justifies the means, and this end – where the people expressed their will, their wish, and articulated their aspirations – was worth every cent, every loti (Lesotho’s currency) government spent on it.

“The people have spoken, and the fact that the people have spoken shows democracy is at work, and the money spent was worth all the effort, all the hard work.

“Many people put in a lot of effort, a lot of hard work, and many people didn’t have much sleep during these elections.”

Ramaphosa said the elections, in fact, cost a lot more than R220?million because of all the work put in by volunteers and as overtime.

“The price of democracy is worth much more than R220?million.”

The elections, which it was hoped would bring stability to the troubled country, produced another coalition government. Analysts fear it could also run into trouble before its five-year term is up.

Democratic Congress leader Pakalitha Mosisili is the prime minister-elect.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.