‘Many township business owners still excluded from mainstream’

Cyril Ramaphosa says apartheid spatial planning damaged the economy in many ways, and that many township business owners are still excluded from the mainstream.

FILE: Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: GCIS.

CAPE TOWN - Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa says boosting economic growth in townships and rural areas is critical for real transformation.

He was responding to an African National Congress member’s question in the National Council of Provinces.

Ramaphosa says apartheid spatial planning damaged the economy in many ways, and that many township business owners are still excluded from the mainstream.

“However, the government is determined to reverse this. We are already implementing key elements of a strategy to boost township enterprises, to increase the involvement of South Africans in the economy, as well as to expand opportunities for our people.”

At the same time, Ramaphosa says he's held discussions with Social Development Minister Bathabile Dlamini about her repeated absence from committee meetings.

But he says the power to sanction errant Members of Parliament, including those who serve on the executive, lies with Parliament.

Ramaphosa says it's not his job to discipline members of the executive.

“Parliament has a full right and authority to sanction members, not only its members but also members of the executive. Those who miss scheduled meetings without reasonable explanation can indeed be sanctioned by Parliament. Such powers do not reside with the leader of government business.”

WATCH: Cyril Ramaphosa answers questions in the NCOP