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PHOTO ESSAY

Sona 2024: Riches and rags — images tell the tale of two South Africas

Sona 2024: Riches and rags — images tell the tale of two South Africas
A picketer with organisations South African Concerned Widows and Widows Voice cries as police move the groups away from the barricade around Cape Town City Hall on 8 February 2024 (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

The 2024 State of the Nation Address in the City of Cape Town was a study in contrasts. Just metres from the red carpet, where politicians displayed their best evening wear, men and women slept on pavements with only ragged blankets for cover. While most cameras were trained on the country’s leaders, picketing widows and community groups were being hustled away from the security barricade by police. Outside the nearby St George’s Cathedral, activists hosted a ‘people’s Sona’, where they warned of a country in crisis.

The People’s Sona attendees participate in the painting of banners, 8 February 2024. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

‘Cry of the Xcluded’ members join in song at the People’s Sona. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Read more in Daily Maverick: SONA blog

Kashiefa Achmat speaks out against the austerity measures and lack of accountability in government at the People’s Sona. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Saftu representive Abeedah Adams draws attention to the housing crisis in around the City of Cape Town. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Members of the public peer through the fence while government officials arrive at Cape Town City Hall for Sona 2024. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Senior Chief Franswha Gallie of the Koopman’s Chainouqua Royal House and his wife Senior Chief Tereza Callie share with Daily Maverick that they hope Cyril Ramaphosa addresses the rights of first nation’s groups at Sona 2024. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Police attempt to move picketing members of the People’s Movement for Change from their spot next to the barricade around Cape Town City Hall. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Members of the public express their grievances oustide the barricade around Cape Town City Hall, as they are asked to move by police. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

The barricade divides members of the public from military personnel, as goverment officals arrive for Sona 2024. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Nnccourrllsson, who lives on the street, near Cape Town Magistrates’ Court. His tent was removed by police on Monday. He expresses his support for the ANC. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

A picketer with the South African Concerned Widows and Widows Voice argues with SAPS officials as the picketers are moved away from the barricade around Cape Town City Hall. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Members of the public stand against the fence and watch as Sona 2024 guests pose for photographs. (Photo: Kyra Wilkinson)

Gallery

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