Ululations filled the air as President Cyril Ramaphosa met with the Soweto Gospel Choir to congratulate them on their third Grammy win.
Ramaphosa, at the Market Theatre Square in Newtown, described the choir as the country’s most colourful export.
The choir won for the Best World Music category in February for their album titled Freedom.
Ramaphosa, accompanied by Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa, had a brief celebratory engagement with the group to congratulate them.
“It’s a real pleasure and a real joy to be standing here before the real heroes of our nation. People who have gone out into the world and showcased what South Africa is all about and came back having scooped their third Grammy award, so I congratulate you many times over and thank you for being as successful as you are.”
Accompanied by Minister of Arts and Culture Nathi Mthethwa, Ramaphosa added: “I’d like to apologise for being delayed. I called ahead to find out what everyone was wearing and when I was told everyone is so colourful I decided to change out of my suit! I want to tell you about this shirt I’m wearing… I actually designed it myself!”
He said it was important for the presidency to have such an event to honour and celebrate the choir’s achievement.
“I’m sure we will see many more,” he said.
(Additional reporting by ANA)