Journalists debate on BRICS expansion after early recess on Day 2 of summit



Published Aug 23, 2023


As Day 2 of the 15th BRIC Summit was unexpectedly cut short at the Sandton Convention Centre, members of local and international press gathered at the media centre to share their views on the summit thus far.

The 15th BRICS Summit, has agreed to allow new countries to join Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa as part of the BRICS bloc.

The announcement was made by International Relations Minister Naledi Pandor on Wednesday after closed plenaries took place earlier.

With high expectations, many longed for the second day to unpack more on the expansion of BRICS membership, and what the summit has in place for Africa.

Leaders have touched on the issue of other countries wanting to join BRICS to promote economic development and cooperation.

The summit is being held at Sandton Convention Centre in Joburg.

It started on Tuesday and will end on Thursday, with all BRICS leaders present except for the Russian President, Vladimir Putin. He is participating in the summit via a video link.

In the media centre, conversations included the infrastructure, health, economy, and education issues facing BRICS countries as well as other nations.

Over 1,000 journalists from around the world have been accredited to attend the much-anticipated summit happening in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Speaking to IOL, Clara Mlano, a broadcast journalist from Ghana working with the Ghana Broadcast Corporation (GBC), weighed on the expansion matter and what the global five leaders are trying to achieve.

She said with expansion, the nations were trying to expand their scope in terms of investment, trade, and cooperation with the bloc.

"It is about cooperation, investment, increasing their reach in technology innovation, enhancing skills and training and education with the BRICS community," she said.

Mlano said she could not give a clear indication of whether her country (Ghana) would join the BRICS community or not because she has not heard anything from them. "I would know after the summit because Ghana officials are here," she said.

However, she stated that the Russia-Ukraine war had a negative impact around the globe, especially in Africa with scarcity of grains, "but Russia has promised to supply and open up other routes to provide grains to the community."

She added that it was open for dialogue mediation to end the crisis.

Furthermore, she applauded the organisation for beefing up security and how it is easy to work and walk around. "Looking at how South Africa is noted, crime is rife in this country, I think the security lived up to the occasion," she said.

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