State of the Na­tion Ad­dress: Look­ing to the fu­ture

Public Sector Manager - - In Other News -

Pres­i­dent Cyril Ramaphosa will de­liver his State of the Na­tion Ad­dress (SoNA) at the an­nual open­ing of Par­lia­ment in Cape Town in Fe­bru­ary.

He will ad­dress a joint sit­ting of the two houses of Par­lia­ment – the Na­tional Assem­bly and the Na­tional Coun­cil of Prov­inces.

Ev­ery year, the Pres­i­dent de­liv­ers the SoNA, which pro­vides an op­por­tu­nity for the na­tion to take stock of the coun­try's do­mes­tic sit­u­a­tion and for­eign re­la­tions, and for the Pres­i­dent to share gov­ern­ment's plan of ac­tion for the year ahead.

The Pres­i­dent also uses the op­por­tu­nity to re­port on the progress that gov­ern­ment has made since the pre­vi­ous SoNA.

The SoNA is di­vided into three parts.The first is the im­por­tant pub­lic par­tic­i­pa­tion role in the cer­e­mony when the Civil Guard of Hon­our wel­comes the Pres­i­dent and his guests as they walk along the red car­pet.This is fol­lowed by a state cer­e­mo­nial, which in­cludes a 21-gun sa­lute and the South African Air Force fly­past, and fi­nally the of­fi­cial ad­dress by the Pres­i­dent.

Mem­bers of the South African Na­tional De­fence Force will line the route that the Pres­i­dent takes to Par­lia­ment.The Mil­i­tary Guard of Hon­our par­tic­i­pates in the cer­e­mony and the mil­i­tary band plays South Africa's na­tional an­them.

The SoNA is one of the rare oc­ca­sions where the three arms of state, namely the Ex­ec­u­tive rep­re­sented by the Pres­i­dent, Deputy Pres­i­dent and Min­is­ters; the Ju­di­ciary, rep­re­sented by the coun­try's Chief Jus­tice and the Judge Pres­i­dents; and the Leg­is­la­ture, rep­re­sented by the mem­bers of Par­lia­ment gather in one place.The pro­vin­cial and lo­cal spheres of gov­ern­ment are also rep­re­sented.

In a Gen­eral Elec­tion year such as 2019, two SoNAs are de­liv­ered.

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