“It will continue to be so, despite that challenges and the legacy of apartheid colonialism that we are confronted with. Our task is to contribute in whatever way we can, in our areas of work, to take this success forward,” added Zuma.
“Our democracy remains solid. All our democratic institutions, including government agencies are strong and functional.”
Zuma said, improvements must be made in various areas of work within the public service, and government is alive to this reality.
“Each year we strive to do better and to take the country forward,” said Zuma.
“That is the purpose of the State of the Nation Address, to identify challenges, progress and further work.”
He also said nine priority areas for 2015 would be energy, strengthening of mining towns, agriculture, small business development and cooperatives, infrastructure development including water, transport and information communication technologies, boosting the industrial policy action plan, attracting investments and Operation Phakisa.
“Progress is being made in these areas as part of ensuring that the country’s wealth is shared by all as proclaimed in the Freedom Charter,” added the president.
Zuma said that inequality was still staring the country in the face.
“Census 2011 informed us that the income of households has hardly changed and that the income of white households is still six times more than that of black households,” read part of his statement on the Presidency website.
“In addition, the black majority still owns only three percent of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, pointing to the need to move faster to achieve meaningful economic emancipation.”
He also called for improvements in the country’s education sector.
“Improving the quality of education and training remains an apex priority. Progress is being made to steadily improve outcomes in the basic education sector,” added Zuma
“We believe we have the right formula at last and that results in all grades will continue to steadily improve.”
The 2015, State of the Nation Address started with high drama that included jibes and forceful removal of MPs in the chambers.