'Four days later, I am disappointed with the Sona'

President Cyril Ramaphosa's State of the Nation Address (Sona) on Thursday evening marked the start of the sixth democratic Parliament after the May general election.

Read: Ramaphosa missed an opportunity to provide a reform agenda - Maimane

However, what did Ramaphosa's speech mean for the country's economy?

Eusebius McKaiser chats to Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute director Isobel Frye, Centre for Economic Development and Transformation founding director Duma Gqubule and Nedbank economist Busi Radebe.

Also read: Sona 'encouraging', but South Africans need details of an action plan

If I look at the Sona, we know that Ramaphosa can diagnose what is wrong but a lot of the times he was harkening to the past. There were many things that were not entirely truthful, right in the begin he says: "After 25 years of democracy, we have made remarkable progress in building a new nation which all South Africans have equal rights and broadening opportunities. Over 25 years we have done much to meet people's needs to reduce poverty."

Busisiwe Radebe, Economist - Nedbank

She says the president's sentiments are not completely true because not much progress has been made.

Overall, I enjoyed listening to the speech, filled with patriotism and I thought it was a great time to be a South African. There more I looked and reflected on it, however, the more I think that it seemed to be a script which was set which is not necessarily linked to the stage. The needs were there but the detail was really short.

Isobel Frye, Director - Studies in Poverty and Inequality Institute

Frye adds that in the past, she always said that Sonas were about setting a scene; however, there have been many scenes set, the country now needs to know how everything will be done.

Four days later, I am disappointed with the State of the Nation Address. There is no other way of saying it, it was a bad State of the Nation Address. Some of the stuff that was in that speech just didn't make any sense.

Duma Gqubule, Founding director - Centre for Economic Development and Transformation

Gqubule says the bar had been set so low by the previous president that everything now seems better.

Quite frankly, the current president will not get the 10 years that Jacob Zuma got and he really has to get his act going on the economy.

Duma Gqubule, Founding director - Centre for Economic Development and Transformation

Listen below this interesting conversation on Ramaphosa's speech:


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