On Thursday, President Jacob Zuma will deliver the first of two State of the Nation addresses for 2014. Thursday's speech is the annual Opening of Parliament address, while the second will take place when a new government is elected after the May elections.
So the taxpayer will cough up R5.7 million for the pomp and ceremony of Thursday's event, for Zuma to announce the year plan for a government whose term comes to an end on 22 April.
If there is anything we all need to deal with, it is the true state of our nation - not the one the president will present as his valedictory State of the Nation address for his first term of office. By RANJENI MUNUSAMY.
When Jacob Zuma was inaugurated as the President of South Africa on 9 May 2009, he set his targets high and was clearly ambitious about his presidency.
After paying tribute to the three men who led South Africa before him, Presidents Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki and Kgalema Motlanthe, Zuma said: "Today, as I take this solemn Oath of Office as the Fourth President of the Republic of South Africa, I do so deeply conscious of the responsibilities that you ...