South Africa President Cyril Ramaphosa has illicited outrage from certain political quarters, after he controversially nominated Cuban doctors for the Nobel Peace Prize during his address to the nation on Monday night.

In his speech, the president branded the medical brigade for their ‘selfless and unwavering assistance’, revealing that Cabinet has approved a proposal to get these healthcare workers the highest possible recognition.

“This evening, I wish to recognise in particular the selfless and unwavering assistance of the government and people of Cuba. In recognition of this effort, Cabinet has approved a proposal to nominate the Cuban Medical Brigade – for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize. We extend our sincerest gratitude to the people of Cuba for this great demonstration of solidarity.”

However, the statement has left a bitter taste in many mouths on Tuesday. Former Mayor of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba was less than impressed with the praise lavished on the Cuban doctors, at the expense of South Africa’s domestic contingent:

“Overall, I am relieved with lifting of some measures, but I still need to understand the announcement of special recognition for Cuban Doctors, when some South African ones are still unemployed.”

“I, Herman Mashaba, a citizen of the Republic of South Africa, nominate our very own South African Frontline Doctors, Nurses & Ancillary Workers for the Nobel Peace Prize, instead of Cubans Doctors – as proposed by the presidency.”

The opposition’s Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) was also left baffled by Ramaphosa’s fawning praise for the island nation.

The party believes that South Africa’s healthcare staff should be in line for a Nobel Peace Prize long before the Cuban Medical Brigade. Despite the overwhelming positives from this ‘family meeting’, the president is facing a raft of criticism this morning:

“Indeed, it is regrettable that the president has overlooked thanking our own health-care workers in favour of praising Cuban doctors — while our health-care workers have had to endure the brutal brunt of serving on the front lines in our hospitals and clinics.

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