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'Broadly, it was a much better speech than we’ve heard to date'

14 February 2020 9:51 AM
Tags:
Eskom
Cyril Ramaphosa
Load shedding
Budget
Economic growth
SONA
Energy crisis
Youth unemployment
Gaye Davis
EWN
Refilwe Moloto
eskom unbundling
2020 Sona
2020 State of the Nation Address
Sovereign wealth fund
structural reforms
eskom divisionalising

The President's speech was detailed and acknowledged our sense of despair, says EWN parliamentary correspondent Gaye Davis.

“This is the year we fix fundamentals,” promised President Cyril Ramaphosa in his 2020 State of the Nation Address (Sona) on Thursday.

President Cyril Ramaphosa delivering the State of the Nation Address on 13 February 2020. Picture: GCIS

Ramaphosa put economic growth at the centre of his speech and announced plans to deal with the electricity crisis and dystopian youth unemployment.

He defended his measured, consensus-building approach to fixing the structure of the economy.

Load shedding will continue, admitted the President, but he said the government will ease supply constraints by allowing for electricity to be sourced from beyond Eskom.

Financially viable municipalities will be allowed to buy their electricity from independent power producers.

Refilwe Moloto asked EWN parliamentary correspondent Gaye Davis to summarise the main points of Sona.

Last time it was unbundling [of Eskom]. Divisionalising? Hmmm… Maybe they haven’t quite decided what we’re going to be doing yet, but they want to give the impression that there is movement… Not much detail on how we’re going to deal with Eskom’s debt mountain… He did say nobody wants to put workers’ pensions at risk and nobody want the financial system’s integrity compromised…

Gaye Davis, parliamentary correspondent - EWN

Broadly… it was a much better speech than we’ve heard to date … it left one with a better feeling… a lot of detail… he’s acknowledged the pain we’re in… the general sense of despair… Nothing much new because so much still have to be thrashed out.

Gaye Davis, parliamentary correspondent - EWN

An interesting proposal to cut the budget by 1%, which means every single department will take a 1% haircut… The money will be set aside for initiatives… to get young people into the economy…

Gaye Davis, parliamentary correspondent - EWN

… we’re going to set up a sovereign wealth fund… I can’t see it getting off the ground soon, because there is no money.

Gaye Davis, parliamentary correspondent - EWN

For more detail, listen to the interview in the audio below.


14 February 2020 9:51 AM
Tags:
Eskom
Cyril Ramaphosa
Load shedding
Budget
Economic growth
SONA
Energy crisis
Youth unemployment
Gaye Davis
EWN
Refilwe Moloto
eskom unbundling
2020 Sona
2020 State of the Nation Address
Sovereign wealth fund
structural reforms
eskom divisionalising

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