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POLL | Do you think there is any point in DA leader John Steenhuisen visiting Ukraine?

04 May 2022 - 12:30
DA leader John Steenhuisen is on a "fact-finding mission" in the Ukrainian capital. File picture.
DA leader John Steenhuisen is on a "fact-finding mission" in the Ukrainian capital. File picture.
Image: Freddy Mavunda

DA leader John Steenhuisen’s trip to Ukraine has been met with a lot of criticism.

The official opposition party leader is on a “fact-finding mission” in Kyiv for the next few days.

Steenhuisen said the trip was for him to ascertain the situation in a “country that has been under siege” from the Russian army for the past two months.

Steenhuisen said his visit to the country was for him to see for himself and to speak for SA.

“If President Cyrl Ramaphosa will not do this, and he has made it clear he will not, then it falls to me as the leader of the opposition and a party which governs for some 20-million South Africans,” said Steenhuisen.

He said has earned the authority and stage to speak for SA on the Russian invasion in Ukraine.

“Why am I in Ukraine? Because the people of SA overwhelmingly stand with the people of Ukraine and are appalled by the violent invasion of [Russian president Vladimir] Putin’s army. Someone has to speak for SA on this, and by being here and seeing for myself, I earn the authority and stage to do so,” said Steenhuisen.

According to Steenhuisen, Ramaphosa does not speak for SA on Ukraine, but speaks for the ANC.

“By refusing to condemn Russian aggression, President Ramaphosa has again chosen to put ANC interests ahead of the interests of ordinary South Africans. The golden thread running through his presidency is that of putting party before country,” he said.

Steenhuisen said criticism of his Ukraine trip was not fair and immature, saying there was no criticism about his visits to KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape after the recent floods.

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