Ramaphosa to reply to SONA debate

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President Cyril Ramaphosa is on Wednesday expected to reply to the two-day debate on his State of the Nation Address.

His reply also comes on the same day when the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (SCOPA) will be discussing his written response on allegations of the misuse of public funds.

This after African National Congress (ANC) MP Mervyn Dirks wrote to SCOPA and wanted Ramaphosa to account.

It follows a leaked audio recording in which Ramaphosa allegedly discussed the issue of funding during an ANC NEC meeting.

SCOPA has subsequently asked the President to submit a written response to share information about his alleged knowledge of the alleged misuse of public funds for political party activities.

While the President is expected to reply to the Joint SONA Debate at 2 PM on Wednesday afternoon and SCOPA will meet from 6:30 PM until 9 PM on Wednesday evening.

Last week, SCOPA Chairperson Mkhuleko Hlengwa said he had studied the contents of the President’s letter which has been referred to Parliament’s Legal Advisers to give guidance on certain aspects of the President’s response.

SCOPA said the President’s response and the legal advice will be tabled before the committee meeting on Wednesday.

SONA debate

Ramaphosa’s SONA address came under fierce criticism from opposition parties at the two-day Joint SONA Debate which started on Monday afternoon.

His speech was put under the spotlight for his stance on job creation, State-own Entities, the appointment of a Chief Justice and the high unemployment faced by Black women in South Africa.

Ramaphosa’s speech was also defended by those in the African National Congress (ANC).

The President drew mixed reactions when he told the nation last week that job creation was the responsibility of the private sector.

He said government’s role was to provide the conditions for businesses to grow and generate jobs.

During the debate, the Democratic Alliance (DA) also announced that it will table a no-confident motion in the entire Cabinet.

Zizi Kodwa

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema has criticised Ramaphosa for not giving Deputy Minister Zizi Kodwa full responsibility to run the Intelligence Portfolio as a young person.

Ramaphosa has centralised State Security to be located in his Presidency.

Malema says criminals are now running the country and intimidating South Africans openly in society.

“Now, there are thugs today going around, they call themselves Operation Dudula, who are harassing innocent people demanding proof of citizenship, nothing is happening to them. These armed individuals are Operating Free because they know this country is run by cowards. They call themselves Operation Dudula. They put guns, they display guns openly on the streets of South Africa in front of the police, yet police do not act against those thugs that intimidate against our people.”

SONA Debate I EFF leader Julius Malema responds to SONA 2022:

Economic growth

Freedom Front Plus leader Pieter Groenewald says Ramaphosa’s announcement on cutting the red tape to accelerate economic growth is nothing new.

He says the President already has said this before.

“You said you are going to establish a task team to break the red tape. Honourable President, in 2020, you already said that. In fact, you said with the flick of the finger you can register your company. And I can assure you with pandemic in 2020, many fingers had flicked to register their companies to get hold of the money with Black Economic Empowerment and to steal the money meant for the people.”

Debate on SONA 2022: