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NC set for virtual State of the Province Address

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Premier Zamani Saul’s address will be broadcast live on social media platforms, television and eight local radio stations

Premier Zamani Saul. Picture: Danie van der Lith

THE ANNUAL State of the Province Address (Sopa) will take place on a virtual platform on Thursday, February 25, starting at 6pm.

The Speaker of the Northern Cape Provincial Legislature (NCPL), Newrene Klaaste, said on Thursday that a maximum of 50 people would be allowed inside the legislature chambers.

“Premier Zamani Saul, will deliver the address in the presence of the Speaker and Northern Cape High Court Judge President. Those permitted to attend include 30 Members of the Provincial Legislature (MPLs), a limited number of assisting officials and the media covering the proceedings,” said Klaaste.

She indicated that the time slot for Sopa 2021 had been moved to 6pm in order to reach a wider audience.

“We anticipate a large audience on a virtual platform, on radio and television. The premier will outline the key priorities of government and report back to the community on previous commitments.”

Klaaste said the proceedings would be broadcast live on the Parliamentary Channel 408 as well as on eight local radio stations in the Province.

“Viewers can also follow the legislature and the Northern Cape provincial government (NCPG) on all the NCPL and NCPG social media platforms advertised, listen to the NCPL podcast on the NCPL app.”

She added that the expenses involved in hosting the event this year would be relatively lower, due to cost savings that would be made on transport, catering and the renting of an external venue.

The Province will save on transport, catering and venue costs. File picture: Sopa 2020

“Our main cost drivers for this year are on items that will ensure that a wide number of people are reached in the comfort of their homes. This includes live streaming of the Sopa, live radio broadcast and telecommunication costs.”

Klaaste also pointed out that two MPLs – MEC for Education Mac Jack and an official, John Galela – along with family, friends to members and officials had lost their lives due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The hybrid sitting will be preceded by a candle-light ceremony as a remembrance to all those who have lost their lives to Covid-19.”

She said the debate on Sopa would take place at the legislature on March 2 at 10am, followed by the premier’s reply on the same day at 2.15pm.