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1994 - Mr Major’s Doorstep Interview in Johannesburg

Below is the text of Mr Major’s interview in Johannesburg, held on Wednesday 21st September 1994.


QUESTION:

[Mr Major was asked about his role in the progress made in South Africa]

PRIME MINISTER:

I think if you had been with me today, going out into the townships, you could have seen some of the role we have played, because throughout this period in the townships we have been producing practical measures to help, not so much interested in political gestures, but practical measures to help with education, to help with sport, to help with community facilities, to help with medical facilities, and we have not just started doing that now, that has been done for very many years throughout the last decade and for far longer. So the role we have always seen ourselves playing is in helping to prepare South Africa for the post-apartheid period, now that has arrived and I think we can build on that and work with the South African government to produce the better future that everybody here would like to see.

Our concern always has been to get South Africa to a position where the opportunities that her people deserve, all the people watching this programme deserve, they will actually be able to have those opportunities. Now we are through the difficult period. The time has come when those opportunities can actually be provided. A good deal of assistance can come from government to government, and I have announced a range of areas where we can help. In addition to that of course, what is it I suppose that most of the people watching this programme would like to see for South Africa? They would like to see economic prosperity for South Africa, jobs for people in South Africa, opportunities for people in South Africa, they would like all the young people to grow up in a stable secure South Africa offering opportunities for all of them. Now that means investment, it means business growth, it means the right sort of education. Those are the practical measures that we have been helping with and that we think Great Britain is best placed to help with in the future, and that is what I have been indicating on this visit.