President Cyril Ramaphosa arrives in New York to participate in the 78th United Nations General Assembly

Media Statement


17 September 2023


President Cyril Ramaphosa arrives in New York to participate in the 78th United Nations General Assembly


President Cyril Ramaphosa has today, 17 September 2023, arrived in New York for a working visit to lead South Africa’s delegation to the General Debate of the 78th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA78).


Member States of the United Nations are this week participating in the annual General Debate of the United Nations General Assembly taking place from 18-26 September 2023.


The President will deliver the South Africa statement to the United Nations General Assembly on Tuesday, 19 September 2023, at 13h00 US Eastern Time, which will be 19h00 in South Africa.


The address to the UN General Assembly will be preceded by a number of High-Level engagements.


These include summits on Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health, Sustainable Development Goals, a High-Level Dialogue on Financing for Development, as well as the Pandemic Prevention, Preparedness and Response and Climate Ambition Summit to be hosted by the United Nations Secretary General.


President Ramaphosa will also lead discussions during the Presidential Roundtable that will be hosted by the United States Chamber of Commerce and US-Africa Business Center.


In addition, the President’s programme will also include several bilateral meetings on the sidelines of UNGA.


UNGA78 is convened under the auspices of “rebuilding trust and reigniting global solidarity: Accelerating action on the 2030 Agenda and its Sustainable Development towards peace, prosperity, progress and sustainability for all”.


The theme has been set by the incoming President of the UN General Assembly Ambassador Dennis Francis of Trinidad and Tobago.


South Africa’s participation at the United Nations is directed by its international relations policy objectives of among others:


(i) Mobilising support for South Africa’s domestic objectives, as outlined in the National Development Plan (NDP), including reducing inequality, unemployment, and poverty eradication.

(ii) Support for the African Agenda and promoting Africa’s sustainable development by advocating for Africa’s priorities under the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063.

(iii) Influencing the reform of the global multilateral architecture; and advancing the agenda of the South in the North-South Dialogue platform.


The Ministerial delegation in support of the South Africa’s participation to UNGA78 is Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Dr Naledi Pandor; Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition Ebrahim Patel; Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, Barbara Creecy; Minister of Health, Dr Joe Phaahla; Minister in the Presidency, Khumbudzo Ntshavheni; and Minister in the Presidency for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, Maropene Ramokgopha.


Media enquiries: Vincent Magwenya, Spokesperson to the President – +27 82 835 6315


Issued by: The Presidency