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Equal Education hopes Ramaphosa will make good on his promise

The organisation says learners are still faced with challenges of no water and electricity access across the country.

FILE: President Cyril Ramaphosa outside Parliament before the State of the Nation Address on 16 February 2018. Picture: Christa Eybers/EWN.

CAPE TOWN/JOHANNESBURG - Equal Education hopes newly-elected President Cyril Ramaphosa will make good on his promise to prioritise education.

They also hope the president will address the inequality in education.

The organisation says learners are still faced with challenges of no water and electricity access across the country.

Equal Educations’ Tshepo Motsepe says eight out of ten children are unable to read after four years of schooling.

“The reality is that inequality remains quite high and we need a capable state that can be able to advance needs of poor people. The trickling down approach of the economy from the top-down does not work to empower people, improve education and our healthcare system and create jobs.”

Meanwhile, political analysts have described Ramaphosa’s State of The Nation Address as impressive.

It follows much uncertainty, postponements, late night announcements and a presidential resignation.

For the first time in many years, the address was delivered without any disruptions.

Political analyst Lubna Nadvi says Ramaphosa's speech was encouraging and touched on key matters such as the cleaning up of state-owned enterprises.

“Articulately relevant… a speech that we could follow and understand.”

She says there were also some positive initiatives announced.

“He announced a lot of initiates, like jobs summit and investment conferences. He spoke about the issues of a living wage, national health care insurance and empowering young people, in particular creating jobs for them.”

“MARKETS WILL JUDGE RAMAPHOSA”

Economists say the markets will judge President Ramaphosa on whether he acts against those who stole from the state as corruption has plagued government entities over the past 10 years.

Economist and senior lecturer at Wits School of Economics Lumkile Mondi said: “The market will soon realise that nothing as change because it’s a different person, but the ANC continues to do what’s been done in the past ten years under Jacob Zuma.”

An economist at Argon Asset Management, Thabi Leoka, says Ramaphosa’s short-term goals for the economy are achievable as he has support from the private sector.

“This is very achievable. If the same speech has been delivered by Zuma, we would get the same reaction.”

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