President Cyril Ramaphosa delivered his fifth State of the Nation Address last Thursday. Picture: Esa Alexander/Pool
President Cyril Ramaphosa delivered his fifth State of the Nation Address last Thursday. Picture: Esa Alexander/Pool

LIVE FEED: SONA 2021 debate

By Siyabonga Mkhwanazi Time of article published Feb 16, 2021

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Cape Town - Political parties are debating the State of the Nation Address delivered by President Cyril Ramaphosa last week.

Most of the parties have said the president did not offer solutions to the state of the economy, the rising unemployment rate and Covid-19.

This comes as South Africa prepares for the inoculation of the first group of people with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine after the Astrazeneca fiasco.

Parties have warned that the economy has failed to pick up after it was shattered by Covid-19.

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But they also argued that even before Covid-19 set in last March, the economy was already in crisis with downgrades and jobs bloodbath.

The economy has not grown significantly in the past few years and National Treasury and the Reserve Bank have revised growth projections.

Political parties also said the debt crisis would blow the Budget through the roof.

Finance Minister Tito Mboweni had last year warned that the current debt trajectory was not sustainable. For any economy to grow its debt must sit below 30% of the Gross Domestic Product.

The debt in the country had risen above 60% with the latest figures to be announced in the budget.

In the SONA Ramaphosa had promised to rollout infrastructure projects to ignite growth and create jobs.

Billions of rand have been promised in infrastructure with coordination on projects to be done at national level to cut red-tape.

Ramaphosa has also said they are sourcing more vaccines from different manufactures to fight Covid-19.

Other than Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer and other manufacturers have promised to supply the country with millions of doses in the next few months.

But the first batch of 80 000 doses from Johnson & Johnson will arrive this week, followed by another batch of 500 000 doses in the next four weeks.

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Political Bureau

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