There was neither pomp nor promise when President Cyril Ramaphosa stepped up to the podium to deliver his fifth State of the Nation Address to a near-empty parliamentary chamber on Thursday night.
Covid-19 lockdown restrictions meant that attendance was restricted to around 50 people: a few party whips, provincial premiers and a couple of judges were in the chamber and the bulk of the budget for the sitting was this year spent on streaming and broadcasting services.
Even Ramaphosa’s speech was basic and bare as the Covid-19 lockdown has left the government with little room to manoeuvre.
He said the government would focus this year on four priorities:
- Defeat Covid-19
- Accelerate economic recovery
- Implement economic reforms to create sustainable jobs
- Drive inclusive growth, and fighting corruption
This appeared to simplify the solution to a very complicated problem in a country ravaged
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