President Cyril Ramaphosa’s has revealed that he was at end of “patronising” and “disrespectful” phone calls from European officials alerting him of a travel ban after South Africa reported the discovery of the a new Covid-19 variant in the country, news site EWN reports.
“The European leaders said: ‘I am sorry to tell you we are banning travel, thank you, goodbye’,” Mr Ramaphosa recounted in a speech on Monday in Senegal’s capital, Dakar.
He added there was no attempt to hear South Africa’s point of view about the Omicron variant.
“We as Africans are respectful. We have always been – and maybe that is where our mistake is and why we were colonised in the way we were colonised because we respect too much, and we say ‘respect us as well’,” Mr Ramaphosa’s said.
EU Council chief Charles Michel, who was also present at the Senegal Peace and Security Forum event, did not address Mr Ramaphosa’s comments but said suggesting there was medical apartheid in the handling of the pandemic was “dramatic”.