Stringent security measures in place ahead of SONA 2022

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The National Joint Operational and Intelligence Structure (Natjoints) which comprises the Police, the Defence Force and the State Security Agency say they are on high alert to ensure that the State of the National Address (SONA) takes place safely.

In a statement, the Natjoints warned that any action aimed at disrupting SONA or contravening the law will not be tolerated.

President Cyril Ramaphosa is due to deliver the address on Thursday at the Cape Town City Hall. The venue was chosen after a fire gutted the National Assembly and Old Assembly buildings last month.

Natjoints also says airspace within 1.5 nautical miles from Cape Town City Hall will be restricted from one 13:00 until midnight on Thursday.

Only the South African Airforce will have flexible use of the airspace during this period.

Drones will also be banned during the period.

People who are not authorised to attend the event have been advised to avoid the area around the City Hall on Thursday.

All systems go

Meanwhile, National Assembly Speaker Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula, has confirmed that Parliament is prepared to host the SONA.

Mapisa-Nqakula was speaking during a media briefing in Cape Town.

“I can confidently say that we are ready to host this auspicious event. President Cyril Ramaphosa will deliver his address to a joint sitting of the National Assembly and the NCOP in that City Hall. All protocols related to the National Disaster Management Act will be adhered to. A total of 298 MPs will be seated in the chamber while a limited number of people will be allowed in the gallery.”

In the video below, media briefing on the state of readiness ahead of SONA 2022: