By Iviwe Makhasi

President Ramaphosa began his 6th State of the Nation Address by acknowledging the fire that destroyed parts of Parliament last month. According to him, the fire represented the devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“What happened in Parliament speaks to a much broader devastation in our land. For many, the fire was symbolic of the devastation caused by COVID-19, by rising unemployment and deeping poverty in our country. It spoke to the devastation of the pandemic that over the past two years has taken the lives of tens of thousands of South Africans, put two million people out of work and brought misery to many families in our country.”

President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced an extension of the R350 rand Social Relief Distress Grant until March next year. Since the start of the pandemic, at least over 10 million people have been benefitting from the grant.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has slammed what he calls an “unacceptable” delay in the transition from analogue to digital television.

By the end of March, he said, the switch off should be complete. “The switch off of analogue transmission has to be completed in a number of provinces already. As I announced in the SONA last year, the other provinces will move to digital signal by the end of March 2022, and I’ve seen the joy that our people have when they gain access to digital and have the pleasure to watch television which is clear, which has many more stations and this we are going to continue doing,” says Ramaphosa.

The National State of Disaster, according to President Cyril Ramaphosa, will be abolished soon. The country is currently on Level One of the nationwide lockdowns.

Ramaphosa noted that all limits imposed by the lockdown measures have been lifted so far during his State of the Nation Address at Cape Town City Hall.

He claims that the administration must still finalize several steps before making a statement about all lockdown laws.

“We are now ready to enter a new phase in our management of the pandemic. It is our intention and also my clear intention to end the National State of Disaster “, Ramaphosa stated.

WATCH: President Cyril Ramaphosa delivers the 2022 State of the Nation Address

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