National Assembly Speaker Thandi Modise is hoping to keep a tight rein on spending for President Cyril Ramaphosa’s state of the nation address (SONA) in two-weeks’ time.
Speaking to eNCA’s Lindsay Dentlinger, Modise promised there will be no frills or frivolous expenses for this year’s SONA.
Instead, she is keen to utilise her budget to further the work of parliament throughout the year.
“For me, it’s important that South Africans feel that their public representatives really do talk about them and their issues, and they are busy interfering on their behalf,” she said.
Modise says they will stick strongly to their budget of just over R1 million.
This will be the second SONA of the year, but the first since the African National Congress won the national election in May.
The promise of no-frills may be completely out of Modise’s hands though and could have absolutely nothing to do with the amount of budget spent.
At the first edition in 2019, Marshall Dlamini – an Economic Freedom Fighters MP – ended up in a scrap with a security officer outside the National Assembly.
The party later claimed their reaction was due to them all being on edge due to a supposed threat on leader Julius Malema’s life
President Cyril Ramaphosa will deliver his state of the nation address on 20 June 2019 at 19:00.
Keeping an open mind
Modise also addressed the calls by opposition parties to increase oversight on the presidency by introducing another portfolio committee.
She refused to be drawn in on the matter, saying she needs to remain impartial in order to keep an open mind when it comes time to make a decision.
“I want to approach the discussion which will come from different parties with a very clear and open mind and look at the arguments from all sides.”