Bua Briefs 138

10 June 2009

State of the Nation Address by President Jacob Zuma

The President of South Africa, Mr Jacob Zuma, delivered his first State of the Nation Address at the Opening of Parliament on 3 June 2009. What follows are highlights of his speech that will now become the Government’s Programme of Action (PoA). After a week of debate in the National Assembly, the President delivered his closing address on 9 June 2009. Highlights of his speech are captured below.

Priorities of the Medium Term Strategic Framework

  • Speed up economic growth and transform the economy to create decent work and sustainable livelihoods.
  • Introduce a massive programme to build economic and social infrastructure.
  • Develop and implement a comprehensive rural development strategy linked to land and agrarian reform and food security.
  • Strengthen the skills and human resource base.
  • Improve the health profile of all South Africans.
  • Intensify the fight against crime and corruption.
  • Pursue African advancement and enhanced international cooperation.
  • Ensure sustainable resource management and use.
  • Build a developmental state, improve public services and strengthen democratic institutions.
  • Create decent work that will be at the centre of our economic policies and will influence our investment attraction and job-creation initiatives.

Key elements of the PoA

Economic development

  • Utilise levers such as procurement, licensing and financial support to assist small and medium enterprises and promote Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment and Affirmative Action policies.
  • Move towards a single integrated business registration system to create an enabling environment for investment.
  • Improve customer service and reduce the cost of doing business in South Africa.
  • The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) has developed a programme to fund companies in distress.
  • A scaled-up Industrial Policy Action Plan will be developed.
  • Reduce the regulatory burden on small businesses.

Infrastructure development

  • As part of Phase Two of the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP), the Community Work Programme will be fast-tracked. The second phase of the EWP aims to create about four million job opportunities by 2014.
  • Create about 500 000 job opportunities between now and December 2009.
  • Ensure that the planned R787-billion infrastructure expenditure as provided for in the Budget earlier this year is properly planned for and executed.
  • Putting all systems to work to make the Confederations Cup a huge success
  • The meeting on 11 June by the Minister of Transport will kick-start a series of engagements with the stakeholders affected by the Bus Rapid Transit system.
  • Roll out digital broadcasting infrastructure and signal distribution transmitters and ensure the reduction of the cost of telecommunications to expend broadband capacity.

Governance and administration

  • Build a developmental state, improve public services and strengthen democratic institutions.
  • Speed up implementation of a single public service.
  • Ensure courteous and efficient service from front-counter staff in the provision of services in all government departments.
  • Establish public liaison capacity in The Presidency.
  • Establish a hotline for easier access.
  • Launch the National Youth Development Agency on 16 June.

Justice, crime prevention and security

  • Police (fight against crime)
    • Give serious attention to combating organised crime, as well as crime against women and children.
    • Enhance detective, forensic and intelligence services.
    • Reduce serious and violent crimes by the set target of 7% to 10% per year.
    • Increase the number of police officers.
    • Intensify efforts against cyber crime and identity theft.
    • Improve the regulation of the private sector security industry.
    • Intensify the fight against crime and corruption.
    • Set up a Border Management Agency.
    • Pay particular attention to combating corruption and fraud in procurement and tender processes, application for drivers’ licences, social grants, IDs, and theft of police case dockets.
    • Actively participate in community policing forums.
  • Justice and constitutional development
    • Establish a transformed, integrated, modernised, properly-resourced and well-managed criminal justice system.
    • Improve the efficiency of the courts and the performance of prosecutors.
    • Support the continued transformation of the judiciary.
    • Enhance judicial independence.
    • Entrench the internal systems of judicial accountability.
    • Ensure full access to justice by all.
    • Increase the number of prosecutors and Legal Aid Board personnel.
    • Fight corruption in the Public Service.
  • Correctional services
    • Improve systems in jails to reduce repeat offending

Social security and community development

  • Provide suitably located and affordable housing and decent human settlements.
  • Work with Parliament to speed up the processing of the Land Use Management Bill.
  • Ensure a comprehensive strategy linked to land and agrarian reform and food security.
  • Work on the targeted renewal of rural towns, through grants such as the Neighbourhood Development Grant programme.

Human-capital development

  • Education: Key priorities for the next five years include to:
    • step up the Early Childhood Development programme to ensure universal access to Grade R and doubling the number of 0 to 4-year-old children by 2014
    • increase enrolment rates in secondary schools to 95% by 2014
    • widely disseminate Guidelines on Sexual Harassment and Violence in Public Schools to ensure that learners and teachers are familiar with them
    • intensify the Adult Basic Education and Training Kha ri Gude programme to promote lifelong learning
    • ensure that the Further Education and Training sector with its 50 colleges and 160 campuses nationally will be the primary site for skills development training
    • improve access to higher education of children from poor families and ensure a sustainable funding structure for universities.
  • Quality of healthcare
    • Reduce inequalities in healthcare provision to boost human resource capacity, revitalise hospitals and clinics and step up the fight against the scourge of HIV and AIDS, TB and other diseases.
    • Improve the implementation of the Comprehensive Plan for the Treatment, Management and Care of HIV and AIDS to reduce the rate of new HIV infections by 50% by the year 2011 and to reach 80% of those in need of antiretroviral treatment during the same period.
    • Introduce a National Health Insurance scheme in a phased and incremental manner.
    • Pay attention to the issues of remuneration of health professionals to remove uncertainty in our health services.
    • Promote quality healthcare, in line with the United Nations (UN) millennium development goals, to halve poverty by 2014.
  • Sport
    • Speed up the revival of school sport and ensure that it forms part of the school curriculum. In addition, we will ensure that the provision of sport facilities in poorer communities receives priority.
  • Social services
    • The transformation will be undertaken in support of women, youth and people with disabilities.
    • By 31 March 2009, more than 13 million people received social grants, of whom more than eight million were children.
    • As part of social infrastructure development we will provide suitably located and affordable housing and decent human settlements.
    • We will transform our cities and towns and build cohesive, sustainable and caring communities with closer access to work and social amenities, including sports and recreation facilities.

International relations

  • Enhancing foreign relations
    • Strengthen South-South relations.
    • Continue to enhance relations with the developed North, including the G8 and our strategic partnership with the European Union.
    • Continue to play an active role in ensuring the conclusion of the World Trade Organisation Doha Development round of negotiations.
  • Africa
    • Work towards the entrenchment of democracy and the respect for human rights on the African continent.
    • Working with Africa and the rest of the world, we will pursue African advancement and enhanced international cooperation.
    • Continue to prioritise the African continent by strengthening the African Union (AU) and its structures and give special focus to the implementation of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development.
    • Continue to assist in the reconstruction and development of the African continent, especially in post-conflict situations.
    • Support the peace efforts of the AU and the UN on the African continent, including in the Saharawi Arab Republic and Darfur in Sudan.
  • Southern African Development Community (SADC)
    • As the chairperson of the SADC and facilitator, we will participate in promoting inclusive government until free and fair elections are held in Zimbabwe. The plight of the Zimbabwean people has had a negative impact on the SADC region, especially South Africa. We call upon all peace-loving countries in the world to support the inclusive government to achieve economic recovery.
    • Support efforts of the SADC region to resolve the situation in Madagascar.
    • Strengthen regional integration with the emphasis on improving the political and economic integration of SADC, towards the AU goal of a Union government.
    • Establish a South African Development Partnership Agency to promote developmental partnerships with other countries on the continent.
  • Middle East
    • Continue to encourage a peaceful and sustainable settlement to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict based on the two-state solution.


Response to the debate on The State of The Nation Address by President Jacob Zuma


  • Lessen the impact of the economic downturn on the most vulnerable.
  • Pursue the maintenance of a stable macroeconomic environment.
  • Work with development finance institutions such as the IDC to identify companies in distress and where appropriate, mobilise assistance.
  • Keep the productive capacity of our economy intact, and retain skills and labour manufacturing, agriculture and mining sectors are ready to respond in time to the revival in demand as the global economy recovers.
  • Create 500 000 work opportunities to alleviate poverty and provide income, work experience and skills development to the many who are unemployed.

War against Poverty

  • Develop a comprehensive social security system that seeks to ensure access to social security as provided for in Section 27 of the Constitution.
  • Reform the retirement provision, National Health Insurance, unemployment insurance, compensation for injuries and diseases on duty, and road accident insurance.


  • Ensure that the judicial officers reflect the demographics of our country.
  • Ensure an integrated, accessible and affordable court system.



  • Ensure that by 2012 every teacher has access to a laptop computer and the Internet to motivate teachers to improve the standard of teaching and learning in schools.


  • Strengthen capacity to investigate and prosecute environmental crimes, enforcing a zero tolerance approach to illegal and unsustainable exploitation of resources.
  • Ensure that all organs of the State comply with environmental legislation.


Confederations Cup 14 – 28 June 2009

Known as the festival of champions, the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup is the precursor to the 2010 FIFA World Cup™. It is played between the winners of each of the FIFA confederations’ regional tournaments, the previous FIFA World Cup winner and the next FIFA World Cup tournament host. Eight international football teams are represented, namely South Africa, Iraq, New Zealand and Spain in Group A and the United States of America, Italy, Brazil and Egypt in Group B. It will take place from 14 – 28 June 2009 at various stadiums, namely Ellis Park (Johannesburg); Royal Bafokeng Stadium (Rustenburg); Loftus Versveld Stadium (Tshwane) and Free State Stadium (Mangaung).

The South African Government extends a warm welcome to the FIFA family, the teams and fans to the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup

  • Government is proud to be associated with the hosting of an event of this magnitude and we look forward to interacting with nationalities from diverse backgrounds.
  • We urge the South African public to welcome all tourists and fans with the spirit of ubuntu as hosting our visitors is a collective responsibility of all the host cities’ people.
  • A nation that works in unison is very strong as it works towards a singular objective – that of being great hosts – and we will be all champions in the end as our visitors will have lasting memories of our hospitality beyond this event.
  • South Africans are known to have flown the South African flag high in past football tournaments and through their humane deeds. We are determined to create a memorable fan and visitor experience.

Hosting the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup is a major milestone towards the attainment of government’s Programme of Action. For instance:

  • Government has invested in the games to expedite the delivery of improved road infrastructure, an upgraded public transport system and safety and security infrastructure.
  • Government’s investment in these projects has seen a creation of thousands of jobs, both in the public and private sectors, and provided economic opportunities to local businesses.
  • Government is working with bus and taxi associations within Confederations Cup host cities to ensure a smooth and reliable transport service for our visitors.
  • Through the 2010 Mass Mobilisation Programme, we have already implemented projects aimed at imparting football, coaching and life skills to learners and regional coaches. The campaigns have also sought to create awareness among the general public and to mobilise society to rally their efforts behind the delivery of world-class events.

Government has made strides to ensure the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup and the 2010 FIFA World Cup™ tournaments are held within a safe and secure environment

  • Procurement of special safety and security equipment, including crowd-control equipment and command vehicles, are among some of the investments made by government in its efforts to deliver incident-free events.
  • Safety and security measures include focus on border security at ports of entry, including South Africa’s land, sea and air borders.
  • Thus far, the joint security forces have undertaken several simulations and training exercises to hone their skills. These include air and maritime defence and CBRN (chemical, biological, radioactive and nuclear) simulation exercises.
  • The number of police reservists will also be doubled ahead of the FIFA World Cup in 2010 from 55 000 members to 100 000, meaning that by 2010, South Africa will have a significantly larger and better-capacitated police force.

KE NAKO. Celebrate Africa’s Humanity™