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Ramaphosa disrupted

Cyril Ramaphosa's lecture at Wits University was disrupted by Marikana protesters.

FILE: Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

JOHANNESBURG - ANC Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa's lecture at Wits University was disrupted by protestors who hurled insults at him over the Marikana tragedy and questioned government's commitment to the poor.

Ramaphosa was speaking on Tuesday night about the National Development Plan (NDP).

He was forced to discuss the Marikana tragedy and says the full story about the shooting is yet to be told.

Several protestors were escorted out of the lecture hall while hurling insults at him and accusing him of having the miner's blood on his hands.

Ramaphosa was involved in Lonmin at the time.

During his lecture, he said only an intelligent state can interfere in a country's economy without becoming a burden or damaging it.

He covered a wide range of topics including international trade, labour disputes, youth employment and the need to develop small business.

Ramaphosa admitted the current economy is not creating enough jobs.

"An incompetent state that intervenes becomes a problem to the economy reducing the welfare for everyone. So we want an intelligent state."

At the same time, the deputy president says the NDP contains no plans to overhaul the country's labour laws but he's reminded trade unions that they can't always have everything they want.

Ramaphosa's main message is that the glass is half full not half empty.

"We're not at a standstill we're moving forward and sometimes we move five steps backwards, shooting ourselves in our feet but we keep moving."

He also spoke about the complex balance between having too few skills and expensive labour and how difficult this makes it for South Africa to compete globally and grow.