Citizens urged to listen to SONA

Thursday, February 9, 2023

The Government Communication and Information System (GCIS), in partnership with the Passenger Rail Agency (Prasa), today encouraged train commuters at the Cape Town train station to listen to the State of the Nation Address (SONA) to be delivered by President Cyril Ramaphosa this evening.

Representatives from both entities arrived at the station very early in the morning and interacted with the commuters while distributing pamphlets on the State of the Nation Address.

On behalf of GCIS, Acting Director-General, Michael Currin, told commuters that it is important for citizens to listen to what the President will be saying during the State of the Nation Address, tonight.

“We have a lot to celebrate in terms of improved services. Today we are proud as there have been significant changes,” he said.

Currin said in the past people had a negative attitude towards government.

“People can now see changes. Many people’s lives have changed. Government is changing people’s lives,” he said.

On behalf of Prasa, Chairperson Leonard Ramatlakane used the opportunity to inform the commuters that the agency is working hard to improve its services.

“If there are no trains, it means no transport for our communities,” he said.

Ramatlakane said Prasa currently has 125 new trains and they are working towards having 600 new trains.

He said they are working towards building partnerships with communities.

“Trains are cheaper as compared to taxis. Most of us can afford it,” Siphamandla Kode, from Nyanga, told SAnews.  He  commutes daily to work using a train.

With regard to the State of the Nation Address, Kode said he will make time to listen to the President.

“It is important to know what are government’s plans and what to expect,” he said.

Echoing the same sentiments was Zitha, who said he always listens to the President when he delivers the State of the Nation Address.

“I’ll be home early so I can listen to the President’s speech. We need to know what are governments plans for this year,” he told SAnews

Prasa is a public entity wholly-owned by Government which reports to the Minister of Transport.

The legal mandate directs Prasa to deliver commuter rail services in the Metropolitan areas of South Africa, long-distance (inter-city) rail and bus services within, to and from the borders of the Republic of South Africa.  

All eyes will be on President Cyril Ramaphosa this evening as he takes to the podium to outline government’s programme of action through his 2023 State of the Nation Address (SONA) at the Cape Town City Hall.

SONA is an annual message delivered by the President of South Africa to a joint sitting of the two Houses of Parliament - the National Assembly (NA) and National Council of Provinces (NCOP).

With South Africa continuing to experience various stages of load shedding, South Africans will be waiting with bated breath to hear how the sixth administration plans to address the power crisis.

When he addresses the nation at 7pm, President Ramaphosa will address the current state of the political, social and economic landscape in South Africa, as well as government's commitments and objectives for 2023. –