No-one will be spared in the government's new fight against corruption, and the criminal justice system will be strengthened to make sure the guilty are locked up, president Cyril Ramaphosa has announced in his State of the Nation address (Sona).
CAPE TOWN, South Africa - South African President Cyril Ramaphosa gave his first state of the nation address on Friday, saying it's time for South Africans to put discord behind them and that the country will "turn the tide" on corruption in state institutions this year.
The country's main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, will work with Ramaphosa if he acts in the interests of the South African people, said party leader Mmusi Maimane.
"Tough decisions have to be made to close our fiscal gap, stabilize our debt and restore our state-owned enterprises to health", said Ramaphosa in his speech, adding that the creation of jobs was a priority in his agenda for 2018.
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Ramaphosa, a lead negotiator in the transition from apartheid to democracy in the early 1990s, was elected by jubilant ruling party legislators anxious to shed political limbo and get the leadership of the country back on track.
The parties say that Ramaphosa will have to back up his words, with concrete plans and programmes.
"South Africa needs the collective of our civil society structures‚ private sector‚ labour‚ progressive political players and a people-centred government to ensure transformation of our society‚ economy and political sphere".
"This means that we urgently need to develop our capabilities in the areas of science, technology and innovation", he told parliament.