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Newsletter: From Evidence to Action

Policy Post: Why ECD did not feature in SONA 2016 and what our sector needs to do about it

This week’s policy post from Ilifa Abantwana provides a critical reflection on South Africa's policy priorities as per SONA 2016 and what this means for ECD in the country.

Last Thursday, 11th of Feb, President Jacob Zuma presented his State of the Nation Address (SONA) to Parliament. The SONA traditionally provides a comprehensive overview of the key gains made in the previous year. The President has always used the opportunity to highlight the upcoming year’s policy and programmatic priorities cutting across social and economic sectors, as well as an indication of how these priorities link up with the country’s goals and objectives.

Not so this year. This year’s SONA appears to be an exercise in retrospective damage-control rather than an instrument for charting the way forward for government as a whole. It focuses almost exclusively on a short-term plan, the details of which are deferred to the Minister of Finance, for achieving a “resilient and fast-growing economy” which is earmarked as lying at “the heart of our radical economic transformation agenda and our National Development Plan”.

Read the full blog by Patricia Martin here