WATCH | Ramaphosa whisked away from ANCWL event, amid security concerns, Covid-19 violations

accreditation
0:00
play article
Subscribers can listen to this article
  • President Cyril Ramaphosa left an ANC Women's League event amid security concerns and violations of Covid-19 regulations. 
  • He was meant to address members of the league at the Lebowakgomo Civic Centre on Thursday afternoon. 
  • The event was cancelled after Ramaphosa was whisked away. 

President Cyril Ramaphosa had to be whisked away by presidential protection unit agents from the Lilian Ngoyi memorial lecture hosted by the ANC Women's League (ANCWL) at the Lebowakgomo Civic Centre on Thursday afternoon.

ANCWL deputy president Sisi Ntombela, who was the programme director, said individuals who had gained access to the venue without being adequately screened had posed a grave security risk.

"Given the recent events that have befallen our country [the burning of Parliament and the attack on the Constitutional Court precinct], we cannot take risks with the life of the president."

AS IT HAPPENED | Ramaphosa receives part 1 of the state capture report

Ntombela added Covid-19 regulations were also not followed as social distancing was not being adhered to.

"Women, as I earlier indicated, we need to respect ourselves because if we don't, no one will. It's too late to do the screening process again and try and adhere to social distancing."

She later said they were the ones who deemed the event unsafe after engaging with the presidential protection unit.

Deputy State Security Minister Zizi Kodwa, who was also at the event and spoke to the president before he was whisked away, declined to comment on whether he made the call to pull the president from the event.

The event was set to begin at 13:00, but because of delays in the screening process and arrival of dignitaries it started at around 13:45.

Even before the president's arrival, several ANCWL leaders kept cautioning those in attendance on the need to adhere to regulations, however, the size of the venue made it impossible to adhere to the 1m distance rule.

Ntombela, however, said the numbers were in accordance to the limit of 1 000 people allowed indoors.

After the abrupt ending of the meeting, a large delegation of what looked like police personnel and ANC provincial leaders gathered for a debriefing at the back of the venue.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Matric results are out! Are you happy with your child's result?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
No, the pandemic really messed up their ability to focus
34% - 733 votes
Yes, they did well given the circumstances
66% - 1447 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
15.36
-0.8%
Rand - Pound
20.68
-0.4%
Rand - Euro
17.26
-0.1%
Rand - Aus dollar
10.91
+0.0%
Rand - Yen
0.13
-0.1%
Gold
1,818.88
-1.6%
Silver
23.54
-1.1%
Palladium
2,332.00
+5.9%
Platinum
1,035.50
+0.6%
Brent Crude
88.20
+2.2%
Top 40
67,364
+2.2%
All Share
73,797
+2.0%
Resource 10
75,253
+3.2%
Industrial 25
91,472
+1.8%
Financial 15
14,925
+0.8%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE