Ramaphosa clarifies comments on churches´ involvement in politics

2016-04-12 08:52
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa (File)

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa (File)

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Johannesburg - Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa on Tuesday sought to clarify comments he made at the weekend which could have given the impression that churches should not get involved in politics.

During a service at Mahwelereng's Church of the First Born, Ramaphosa asked the congregation to pray for leaders and government.

The SABC reported that Ramaphosa took a swipe at religious leaders who were criticising government, saying they should rather pray for it.

Ramaphosa's office said the impression given that he said churches should not get involved in politics was incorrect.

"Deputy President Ramaphosa welcomes the robust manner in which the churches and all other religious formations have engaged the government on critical issues facing our country," his spokesperson Ronnie Mamoepa said in a statement.

Ramaphosa felt that working with churches and other religious formations would help improve people's lives, he said. Ramaphosa appreciated the role churches had played in the country's history.

The South African Council of Churches (SACC) met four of the ANC's top six officials on Friday. Afterwards they told reporters they had asked the ANC to convince Zuma to resign.

SACC general secretary Bishop Malusi Mpumlwana said ANC officials were facing mounting pressure.

"We need to appreciate that this is not an easy call to make. We could feel and sense the pain within the ANC delegation because they are wrestling with the same issue. We recognised that much of our own congregations are also members of ANC. The pain is felt across the board."

He said the ANC was unable to respond directly to their request. The SACC stressed that the ANC should "assist" Zuma's resignation, and not force him to step down.

Read more on:    anc  |  cyril rama­phosa  |  religion  |  politics

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