Watch live: Tune into SONA 2021 livestream [video]
The anticipation continues to build as we head closer towards 19:00 when President Cyril Ramaphosa is scheduled to make his State of the Nation Address (SONA 2021).
What will Ramaphosa cover?
A lot of expectation awaits the president’s statement of reflection on what has been South Africa’s most challenging year yet. While the country battled with new threats and problems, like the Covid-19 pandemic for one, old governance issues persisted.
Maladministration and claims of poor quality assurance marred the government’s vaccine acquisition attempts. Thanks to the Special Investigating Unit (SIU), we were treated to an exposè that lifted the lid on a R13-billion PPE scandal that involves hundreds of government officials from every state institution.
Moreover, Ramaphosa leads the line with an economy that’s tipped to tank in its performance for this financial year, and perhaps, many others to follow.
So, what does the president have in store for us this time around, you might ask. Well, there are a number of things he may cover.
Firstly, the government has made strides in acquiring the Johnson & Johnson vaccine which, based on trials, is one of the few doses that are effective against the Covid-19 variant that mutated in South Africa. We expect the president to go into broader details about how the refurbished vaccine programme will be rolled out.
Secondly, Ramaphosa will have to touch on the recommendations put to him in the SIU report. The South African public will no longer accept the partisan fluff he has spewed in the past about taking a firm approach to dealing with corruption.
We expect the president to make key announcements in this regard, for he must know that this is where he will win back the bulk of the public’s confidence.
Lastly, there is a multitude of announcements Ramaphosa will make but we expect him to expand more on the Employment Stimulus Package. Thus far, R13 billion has been injected into the economy. What about the remaining R87 billion? This, we expect Ramaphosa to lay into.
SONA 2021: Watch live stream right here
The president’s first-ever hybrid SONA 2021 sitting will air on national news broadcasting channels at 19:00. Alternatively, you can tune into the live stream of the address below: