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President Ramaphosa responds to post-SONA debate

While politicians from opposition parties engaged in a robust State of the Nation Address debate, saying it is full of unrealistic dreams, President Cyril Ramaphosa says his SONA was not merely about dreams.

Ramaphosa delivered his response to parliament’s post-SONA debate on Wednesday. Ramaphosa says it was about setting out what is needed to achieve the South Africa we all want.

The response was largely directed at those who expressed a narrative that the President’s speech was thin with detail and was about dreams.

“The State of the Nation Address was not merely about dreams. It was about the lived reality of our people and setting out what we need to do to achieve the South Africa that we want.

“What it sought to do was to say let us imagine this South Africa that we so long to have. And in imagining this South Africa, let us do everything that we can to work towards this South Africa,” he said.

The President agreed with Public Works and Infrastructure Minister Patricia De Lille, who said during Tuesday’s debate that she observed that the State of the Nation Address shows us a picture and sketches a framework.

“SONA is about articulating a vision and a direction for government programmes. Ministers who are responsible for government work will provide details on the programme in budget votes of the various departments.

“Guided by the election manifesto of the governing party, this SONA was about setting out the seven priorities of the administration, namely economic transformation and job creation; education, skills and health; consolidating the social wage through reliable and quality-based services; spatial integration, human settlements and local government; social cohesion and safe communities; a capable, ethical and developmental state and a better Africa and a better world,” the President said.

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