The president announced this when he led the debate on the presidency’s budget vote in the National Assembly in Cape Town on Wednesday.
The announcement came as the country prepares to commemorate the centenary of Mandela and struggle icon Albertina Sisulu, whose husband Walter Sisulu was also a Robben Island prisoner.
Ramaphosa said the new fund, to be called the Nelson Mandela Thuma Mina Fund, will be administered by the Nelson Mandela Fund.
“I have, and this is a private initiative, decided to contribute half of my presidential salary to a fund that will be managed by the Nelson Mandela Fund,” Ramaphosa said.
He said the fund is a private, citizen-driven initiative “that will ask all of those with the means to contribute a small portion of their salaries to support the many projects to build the nation.”
“This fund, through discussions that we have had with the Nelson Mandela Foundation, will be launched on the 18th of July to mark the 100th anniversary of Madiba’s birth and will be called the Nelson Mandela Thuma Mina Fund,” he said.
The president said citizens should put their differences aside and work together in the spirit of nation-building.
“It is this spirit of Nelson Mandela and Albertina Sisulu, a spirit of solidarity, a spirit of service, and a spirit of shared humanity that we should seek to emulate.”
The president said that, while there were still challenges to be faced in the country, progress has been made in his first 100 days in office to improve the lives of all South Africans.
“It is nearly 100 days since we decided, together, to make a clear and decisive break with the discord and division of recent times.
“It was a moment at which we made plain our determination to act with urgency and resolve to transform our society, to grow our economy and to create the jobs that our people so desperately need,” he said.
He said his government had identified its shortcomings and has taken decisive steps to improve the business environment, promote the country to investors, ensure policy certainty, strengthen state-owned companies and create pathways into employment for the youth.
“We are working with labour, business and communities to forge a new social compact around job creation, which will form the basis for a broader compact around growth, development and transformation,” the president said.