Capetonians cynical about SONA ’14


President Zuma’s State of the Nation address is looming over Cape Town. Many Capetonians remain cynical, claiming JZ needs to pull up his socks and deliver on his promises. Jobs, housing and greedy governance are just a few of the issues which locals feel Zuma needs to address in his speech this evening. RA’EESA PATHER reports from Cape Town.


Wadea Tape, flower seller, Parkwood

The country’s in a bad state. Stuff is too expensive, and how must the people live? We need more jobs for the people and Zuma must take gangsterism away. Food must become cheaper, because people don’t have money so they struggle. Make South Africa a better place for all of us, because we are all citizens of this country and we need that.





Tafadzwa Samunderiu, barman, Khayelitsha

What I think Zuma should do is to give an appropriate State of the Nation address to convince people, because they doubt him. People have doubt concerning the issues he has not addressed – houses, jobs… especially the jobs.

They need to change the approach they have towards people. If they promise people something they must act upon that thing, not campaign only. What you really have to know is that many promises are made during elections because they want to convince people. But, after elections, they forget about what they promised to people, which I think is a bad influence on people. So their promises need to be kept so that next time, when the election comes, people will know these people will deliver on their messages and their promises.

Speeches are very simple – I’ll give you an example from President Mugabe of my country. Don’t get sophisticated with words. Just make a plain, simple speech, then people will understand you, rather then making sophisticated speeches that people won’t understand. People tend to say his speeches are boring because there’s nothing in them that they want to hear from him. If you tell people what they want to hear, then speeches become alive.



Thembisile Gongteka, public safety official, Khayelitsha
The president needs to bring us money, and I just need him to build places to stay. We don’t have a place to stay. He must give the people who stay on the street a project, or something like that. He must also look after their children. He must give the student bursaries.

Now that Jacob Zuma is the president, he has changed. He changed his promises for this country. He built a nice houses there in Nkandla. What about us? In my place there in the Eastern Cape, they don’t have electricity or water or houses – no projects there. He must prove that he is a president who, if he says “I want to build houses in Khayelitsha”, he builds it.




Angangi Mondele, parking marshall, Elsies River

If you have a nice job, South Africa is not a bad place. If you don’t have a nice job, then you’re going to struggle. Not just President Zuma, but all the presidents in the world, they mustn’t look out for themselves only. They must look out for people as well. They must create jobs so that everyone can have a better life, everyone can afford to buy houses, everyone can live like a human being.





Fania Resnik, shop manager, Tamboerskloof

I think we can definitely do better. I don’t think this country takes care of its people. I think it’s only looking out for itself, specifically the government. Jacob Zuma is a boring speechmaker. He needs to use less “ums” in his speeches.






Towfeeq Basardien, shop manager, Milnerton

I think there can definitely be an improvement, definitely a better president. No, I don’t know about the State of the Nation address.

The poverty can change, and all his empty promises. He can actually fulfil them for a change. Where I live, in Milnerton, there’s a strip, a populous location behind me, and the poverty that goes on there is ridiculous. He can at least start cleaning up. He’s catching too much kak here. I think he just cares about himself and that’s about it.



Chad van Reenen, retail employee, Boston

No, I don’t know about President Zuma and the State of the Nation, I actually don’t even care about him. I don’t think he’s for us. I think he’s for himself. I heard he has some billion dollar house or something, so I don’t really care about him. I don’t know what he can do – just help us, I guess. Getting jobs… No, I have a job, but I need a better job!





Lenny Gqwaku, street cleaner, District Six

Well, for the ones who are in the right places, it’s in a good state, but for the less fortunate and poor who aren’t able to go into the mainstream economy, then no. I think Zuma’s doing quite a lot though. It’s just a matter of opening people’s eyes so they can see the opportunities that are already there in front of them and give them a way to make a better living. For me, what other ways are out there for people that are in my situation, homeless and stuff, to get free education? All the free stuff I can get my hands on, he’ll have to talk about that!


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