- President Cyril Ramaphosa announced during his State of the Nation Address that the government had identified four priorities for 2021
- These priorities focus on defeating Covid-19, restoring Eskom's capacity, accelerating economic recovery and fight corruption
- Ramaphosa announced a sweeping set of changes to Eksom and anti-corruption measures
President Cyril Ramaphosa revealed that the government has four priorities for 2021. These are to restore Eskom operations and finances and expand its generational capacity, to defeat Covid-19, to accelerate economic recovery and finally to fight corruption and restore weakened elements of the state.
Eskom to be restructured into three entities
One of the priorities he set out was to intervene in Eskom and implement a recovery plan to rapidly expand Eskom's generation capacity.
The key objective this year is to restore the power generation utility operation and financial health. Eskom has been restructured into three separate entities, generation, transmission and distribution.
The government will also start to ease the licence requirements for new embedded generation projects which could add 5 000 megawatts to the grid and reduce the impact of load shedding.
Defeating the Covid-19 pandemic
Ramaphosa acknowledged that mistakes were made and that the virus has caused a great deal of personal and economic harm.
He has made fighting Covid-19 a top priority for 2021. A further 9 million Covid-19 vaccines have been secured from Johnson & Johnson.
Recovery plan aimed at supporting local production
Ramaphosa announced that the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan has an ambitious aim to reduce South Africa's reliance on imports by 20%.
"They have identified 42 products – ranging from edible oils to furniture, fruit concentrates, personal protective equipment, steel products and green economy inputs – that can be sourced locally."
If successful the Recovery Plan will add R200 billion to the country's annual output.
National Anti-Corruption Advisory Council
Finally, Ramaphosa explained that another priority is to fight corruption and restore weakened elements of the state.
He directly referenced the recent revelations from the Zondo Commission of Inquiry which has revealed the extent of state capture and corruption.
He announced that a National Anti-Corruption Advisory Council will be created and members appointed, The multi-sectoral body will oversee the establishment of an independent anti-corruption body.
Ramaphosa also said that the government moved swiftly when alerted of alleged fraud and corruption surrounding the procurement of Covid-19 goods and services.
Earlier, Briefly.co.za reported that President Cyril Ramaphosa delivered the 2021 State of the Nation Address (SONA) on the evening of Thursday 11 February. Ramaphosa spoke about the coronavirus pandemic and the vaccine rollout in the country.
The president stated that the AstraZeneca vaccine's low efficacy will not delay the vaccine rollout in the country, which is set to start in March. Ramaphosa added that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which is more effective against the 501Y.V2 variant, will be used.
The country has secured 9 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine with the first batch of 80 000 doses expected to arrive in the country next week.
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