PRETORIA-- The African Union will at the 73rd United Nations General Assembly call for the continent to be allocated two permanent seats on the UN Security Council (UNSC), South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said.

Ramaphosa made the remark on Friday while addressing the diplomatic community accredited to South Africa, among them ambassadors, high commissioners, consuls-general and Charge D'affaires.

As we go to this assembly, South Africa will strongly advocate for the comprehensive reform of the UN Security Council. We are calling for the expansion in the permanent and non-permanent category of the Security Council from 15 to 26 seats.

For Africa to be fully represented at the Security Council, Ramaphosa said it should get no less than two permanent seats and a total of five non-permanent or elected seats.

The position was reiterated by Dean of Diplomatic Corps and DRC Ambassador Bene M'poko, who said South Africa had the expertise and commitment to the peace agenda based on its past and mediating in issues of conflict in Africa.

In June, South Africa was elected at the United Nations General Assembly to serve as a non-permanent seat in the UNSC for the term 2019-2020.

Ramaphosa said South Africa would in its two-year tenure continue to campaign for a permanent seat.

South Africa, he added, was committed to working with its partners in Africa and across the world to secure outcomes that serve national, bilateral and multilateral interests in a manner that reiterates the inescapable reality that the development of South Africa is inextricably linked to African regeneration".

The President further said it was important for South Africa and its diplomatic partners to strengthen relations.

We live in a time when the world is getting smaller, when new technologies are enabling progress at an unprecedented pace. This is a time when the means to eradicate poverty, unemployment and inequality appear to be well within our grasp.

South Africa has collaborated actively in bilateral and multilateral efforts to resolve some of the continent's recurring conflict situations.

Ramaphosa said government was working towards improving the country's investment environment by ensuring policy certainty and consistency that would see the performance of the economy improve.

Earlier this year, I announced an investment drive aimed at generating at least $100 billion in new investment over the next five years, he said.

The drive will culminate in an Investment Conference to be held in Johannesburg from 25 - 27 October 2018.


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