LIVE FEED: President Cyril Ramaphosa delivers his SONA
By Zintle Mahlati 25m ago
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Cape Town – President Cyril Ramaphosa is delivering his State of the Nation Address (SONA), marking the opening of Parliament on Thursday.
This year’s SONA proceedings take place under different circumstances due to Covid-19 safety protocols and will see the event being held virtually for the first time.
Only 50 members of Parliament will be in the chambers in Parliament this evening as part of regulations put in place for social distancing.
Ramaphosa’s address will also take place as the country is currently under level 3 of the risk-adjusted lockdown.
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This is as country battles the fight against the coronavirus pandemic which has resulted in 1.4 million confirmed cases since the first case was recorded in March 2020.
There have been 47 145 confirmed deaths linked to the virus and over 1.3 million recoveries.
As the country went into a hard lockdown last year March, a variety of consequences have since been felt. Many businesses buckled under pressure and closed due to restrictions and many people lost their jobs due to the tough economic conditions.
The government has also come under pressure to quickly procure coronavirus vaccines and begin the inoculation programme.
So far, it’s expected that the first phase of this programme will begin next week with healthcare workers who will be inoculated using the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Ramaphosa will be expected to outline several issues during his address especially regarding economic recovery, unemployment and possibly issues pertaining to the vaccination programme.
These are some of the issues that opposition political parties like the DA have pressured the president on this week ahead of the address.