South African business tycoon Patrice Motsepe has apologised for his recent remarks in which he told US President Donald Trump that Africa loves him.The comments were made at a private dinner hosted by Trump during the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, last week.

Social media erupted in a debate after a video of the tycoon making the remarks went viral.ย  While most users disagreed with Motsepe, others seemed indifferent.

In a statement, Motsepe says his remarks were partly aimed at encouraging discussions between the Trump Administration and African political and business leaders. He says this was particularly in the context of the increasing feedback from US leaders that South Africa and some African countries are anti-American.

The businessman says Africa and America share the same values and it is in the interest of the continent to build mutually beneficial socio-political and trade ties between the economies and countries. Motsepe concurs with sentiments shared by some social media users that he had no right to speak on their behalf.