In a speech delivered at a time of great economic difficulty, President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced seven priorities that will fast track South Africa’s path to prosperity.
Delivering his third State of the Nation Address (SONA) in Parliament on Thursday evening, the President said the time for idle talk was now over — everything comes down to implementation if the country is to realise the vision of the National Development Plan (NDP).
“Unless we take extraordinary measures, we will not realise Vision 2030. This means that we need to prioritise. We need to focus on those actions that will have the greatest impact, actions that will catalyse faster movement forward, both in the immediate term and over the next 10 years.
“Now is the time to focus on implementation. It is time to make choices. Some of these choices may be difficult and some may not please everyone,” he said.
The President said that in an economy that is not growing and at a time when public finances are limited, government will not be able to do everything in one go.
Announcing the seven bold priorities, he said the focus will be on:
– Economic transformation and job creation;
– Education, skills and health;
– Consolidating the social wage through reliable and quality basic services;
– Spatial integration, human settlements and local government;
– Social cohesion and safe communities;
– A capable, ethical and developmental state and
– A better Africa and World.
The President said all the country’s programmes and policies across all departments and agencies will be directed in pursuit of these overarching tasks.
“At the same time, we must restore the National Development Plan to its place at the centre of our national effort, to make it alive, to make it part of the lived experience of the South African people,” he said.
The South Africa we want
The President said as the country enters the next 25 years of democracy, there was a need to proclaim a bold and ambitious goal – a unifying purpose – to which everyone dedicates their resources and energies.
“As we enter the last decade of Vision 2030, let us even more clearly define the South Africa we want and agree on the concrete actions we need to achieve them.
“To ensure that our efforts are directed, I am suggesting that within the priorities of this administration, we agree on five fundamental goals for the next decade,” he said.
The President said some of the goals — aimed at tackling poverty, inequality and unemployment, the pillars of the National Development Plan – will mean that:
– No person in South Africa will go hungry.
– The economy will grow at a much faster rate than the population.
– Two million more young people will be in employment.
– Schools will have better educational outcomes and every 10-year-old will be able to read for meaning.
– Violent crime will be halved.
“Let us make these commitments now – to ourselves and to each other – knowing that they will stretch our resources and capabilities, but understanding that if we achieve these five goals, we will have fundamentally [...]
President Cyril Ramaphosa is set to deliver the first state of the nation address (Sona) of the 6th Parliament on Thursday in Cape Town.
This is the second Sona in just over four months. It marks the start of the 6th democratic Parliament after the country’s general election in May.
Ramaphosa will deliver the address under the theme “Let’s grow South Africa together as we celebrate 25 years of freedom”, since the country commemorates 25 years of freedom and democracy after the historic 1994 elections.
The celebration is said to reflect on the country’s successes and challenges, as well as find ways to improve the lives of people.
What to expect
Although much has been achieved over the past 25 years of freedom, TimesLIVE reported that South Africans are eager to hear how the reversing economy can be tackled, as citizens are now demanding more than a plan but actions and tangible results.
Time for Ramaphosa’s address
The address will start at 7pm and will be broadcast live across a number of television and radio stations.
After the Sona, Parliament will meet again on Tuesday in a joint sitting of both houses to debate the content of the president’s address and on Wednesday for the president’s reply.
According to the City of Cape Town, road closures will take place on the following times:
From 6:00 to 23:45 (for rehearsals):Church Square Roeland Street: between Plein and Buitenkant Street Company Gardens Government Avenue from Orange Street to Wale Street Plein Street from Longmarket Street to Roeland Street St Johns Street from Roeland Street to Vrede Street Gallery Lane Bouquet Street Hope Street between Roeland and Glynn Street Wesley Street between Buitenkant and Hope Street Glynn Street between Buitenkant and Hope Street Wale Street between Queen Victoria and Adderley Street Bureau Street between Adderley and Parliament Street Spin Street and Mostert Street between Corporation and Parliament Street Parliament Street from the gates of Parliament to Longmarket Street.
Roads to close on Thursday evening only
From 17:00 to 20:00:Buitenkant Street between Roeland and Strand streets.
From 17:45 to 19:30:Klipper Road, Newlands, from Main Road (M4) to Newlands Avenue Princess Anne Avenue, Newlands, from Newlands Avenue to Union Avenue Newlands Avenue, Newlands, from Dean Street to Princess Anne Avenue Dean Street, Newlands, westbound from Main Road (M4) to Newlands Avenue M3, Union Avenue, Rhodes Drive, Philip Kgosana Drive (De Waal Drive), Roeland Street, city-bound carriageway from Newlands Avenue to city centre Woolsack Drive, Rondebosch, westbound between Main Road (M4) and Rhodes Drive (M3) Anzio Road, Observatory, from Main Road (M4) to Philip Kgosana Drive (De Waal Drive) (M3) N2, Settlers Way city-bound carriageway from Main Road (M4) to city centre.
From 18:00 to 19:30:Roeland Street, between Buitenkant and Brandweer Street.
President Cyril Ramaphosa has brought in a member of the opposition, Patricia de Lille, to head the ministry of public works.
The president announced his executive on Wednesday evening, reducing the size of cabinet from 36 to 28 ministers.
Ramaphosa’s executive had few surprises as he got rid of all those implicated in state capture while bringing in young blood.
“In appointing a new national executive, I have taken a number of considerations into account, including experience, continuity, competence, generational mix and demographic and regional diversity,” he said.
Ramaphosa said that those who were appointed must realise that the expectations of the South African people had never been greater and that they would shoulder a great responsibility.
“Their performance – individually and collectively – will be closely monitored against specific outcomes. Where implementation is unsatisfactory, action will be taken,” he said.
Newcomers include Senzo Mchunu at the department of public service and administration, Ronald Lamola as justice minister and Jackson Mthembu will now serve as minister in the presidency.
Former Gauteng finance MEC Barbara Creecy is the new minister of environment, forestry and fisheries.
The new department of agriculture and land reform will be headed by Thoko Didiza. Minister of cooperative governance and traditional affairs is Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
The new health minister is Zweli Mkhize, while Aaron Motsoaledi has become home affairs minister.
The minister of state security is Ayanda Dlodlo, with her deputy being Zizi Kodwa.
The minister of tourism is Nkhensani Kubayi-Ngubane, while Ebrahim Patel will head the new department of economic development, trade and industry.
Fikile Mbalula is the new transport minister.
Tito Mboweni remains finance minister, Angie Motshekga stays in education, while Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula stays on as defence minister.
Blade Nzimande remains as higher education minister, with Buti Manamela as his deputy.
Bheki Cele will continue in his police portfolio, with Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams continuing as minister of communication.
Here is the full list:The deputy president is David Mabuza. The minister of agriculture, land reform and rural development is Thoko Didiza. The deputy ministers are Sdumo Dlamini and Mcebisi Skwatsha. The minister of basic education is Angie Motshekga. The deputy minister is Dr Regina Mhaule. The minister of communications is Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams. The deputy minister is Pinky Kekana. The minister of cooperative governance and traditional affairs is Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. The deputy ministers are Parks Tau and Obed Bapela. The minister of defence and military veterans is Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula. The deputy minister is Thabang Makwetla. The minister of environment, forestry and fisheries is Barbara Creecy. The deputy minister is Maggie Sotyu. The minister of employment and labour is Thulas Nxesi. The deputy minister is Boitumelo Moloi. The minister of finance is Tito Mboweni. The deputy minister is Dr David Masondo. The minister of health is Dr Zwelini Mkhize. The deputy minister is Dr Joe Phaahla. The minister of higher education, science and technology is Dr Blade Nzimande. The deputy minister is Buti Manamela. The minister of home affairs is Dr Aaron Motsoaledi. The deputy minister is Njabulo Nzuza. The minister of human settlements, water and sanitation is Lindiwe Sisulu. The deputy ministers are Pam Tshwete and David Mahlobo. The minister of international relations and cooperation is [...]