State of the Nation Address: February 2013
|(The Government of South Africa)|
- The State of the Nation Address is a speech to the nation by the President of the Republic of South Africa. It is traditionally held to coincide with the annual opening of Parliament.
- The address is delivered at a Joint Sitting of the National Assembly (NA) and the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) of Parliament.
- The address focuses on the current political and socio-economic state of the country.
- The sitting is called by the President and is hosted by the Speaker of the NA and the Chairperson of the NCOP.
- It is one of the rare occasions where the three arms of state, namely the executive, represented by the President, Deputy President and Ministers, the judiciary, represented by the country's Chief Justice and the Judge Presidents, and the legislature, represented by the Members of Parliament (MPs), come together in one place.
- Members of the public are also represented at the State of the Nation Address.
The State of the Nation Address usually takes place in February. However, in a year when there is a general election, two addresses take place, one to mark the final session of the outgoing Parliament and the other after the elections, when the new President and Parliament are acknowledged.
- Public participation is an important part of the ceremony and members of the public are invited to participate in the ceremony as invited guests of Parliament.
- South African citizens from across the country form part of the Junior and Civil Guards of Honour.
- The Civil Guard of Honour, which welcomes the President to Parliament, comprises ordinary South Africans.
- The Junior Guard of Honour is drawn from schools around the country and represents the country's youth.
- Eminent South Africans are usually invited to be part of the activities; they are drawn from all nine provinces and are individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the country.
- State of the Nation Address, 14 February 2013
- State of the Nation Address, 9 February 2012
- State of the Nation Address, 10 February 2011
- State of the Nation Address, 11 February 2010
- State of the Nation Address, 3 June 2009
During every State of the Nation Address and opening of Parliament, roads in areas surrounding the Parliament buildings in Cape Town are closed temporarily. To plan your route in advance, find detailed information: Road closures for opening of Parliament