Head of Research at ETM Analytics, George Glynos is concerned about the measures announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa.

On Tuesday night, Ramaphosa announced that all unemployed South Africans will be entitled to a special grant of R350 for the next six months.

The COVID-19 Social Relief of Distress grant will benefit individuals who are currently unemployed and do not receive any other form of social grant or Unemployment Insurance Fund-payment.

The Department of Social Development will issue the requirements needed to access and apply for this funding.

Responding to the measures, Glynos says, “I understand why (government) they are doing it….am not sure if this is the way to do it. They are reprioritising spending, raising capital and spend it on the economy. We understand they are helping people with no money but it bothers they are deploying the SANDF (South African National Defence Force) in the way they are, it bothers me that they are building the debt level in the way that the country can’t afford.”

In the video below, Neil Coleman says SA’s stimulus package very encouraging:

Parties react positively

Political parties have reacted positively to the social and economic relief plan announced by Ramaphosa to mitigate the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The President announced a R500 billion plan which seeks to stimulate the economy, protect jobs and alleviate hunger.

African National Congress Deputy Secretary General, Jessie Duarte says the party is glad that the economic and social COVID-19 relief plan takes everyone in the country on board including the unemployed.

With regards to money being sought from the World Bank and IMF, a thorny issue with the tripartite alliance, Duarte says she believes cabinet will be cautious:

Duarte says, “We had deep discussions about what it would mean to go to the World Bank and we understand and believe that they have put out packages that are low interest bearing and where they do not have the usual old conditionality that we know of in the past and we are comfortable that the cabinet and the leadership in the cabinet will make sure that our sovereignty is not undermined and we trust them and we know that they will do everything possible to negotiate the best possible deals in our national interest.”

In the video below, political parties react to President Ramaphosa’s R500 billion stimulus package:

President’s speech ticked the majority of the boxes

The Democratic Alliance (DA) Leader, John Steenhuizen says the President’s speech ticked the majority of the boxes that the DA had hoped it would.

He says the party is happy that as President Ramaphosa indicated, South Africa will be moving towards easing lockdown restrictions to protect jobs and livelihoods:

Steenhuizen says, “There was a twin threat to life in South Africa one from the spread of the virus and one from the grinding economic depression that pushes people into hunger, into starvation, into malnutrition and into exposure we have got to address the twin threat to life in South Africa and the President has accepted that this evening and we are going to look at a model that looks to saving lives and livelihoods.”

In the video below, President Ramaphosa addresses Nation on additional COVID-19 measures:

Additional reporting by Busi Chimombe.