- President Cyril Ramaphosa's State of the Nation Address will be taking place next week
- However, Parliament has announced that it has planned a minimalist event
- Amid economic challenges, the budget is set at a tight R2 million
The nation's politicians will soon be strutting down the red carpet at this year's State of the Nation Address.
eNCA reports that Parliament is aiming to spend less than R2 million on the affair, opting for a no-frills, minimalist event.
This is President Cyril Ramaphosa's second SONA in the past financial year and in a bid to reduce costs, the usual lavish dinner for MPs and guests will be omitted.
The junior and civil guard has been cancelled and advertising and branding have been greatly reduced from past addresses.
Commenting on the occasion, National Assembly Speaker Thandi Modise revealed they have managed to keep far below the R7.6 million set aside for both SONAs:
"We remain vigilant and sensitive to the economic challenges we face, and therefore the budget of SONA has been designed to ensure key features have been retained."
However, there remains a dark cloud of uncertainty over the entire occasion, despite the efforts to keep costs down.
Briefly.co.za reported that Economic Freedom Fighter leader Julius Malema had threatened to disrupt the SONA unless Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan was fired.
Malema vowed that, should Ramaphosa ignore his request, the wrath of the Red Berets would be turned in his direction instead.
Despite this, the previous SONA was also under threat from the EFF but the party had opted out of disrupting the occasion.
Only time will tell if this year the political party will make good on their promise to shake things up at the event.
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