A new venue will be determined for SONA as Parly fire continues


Radio 786

National Assembly Speaker Novisa Mapisa-Nqakula has expressed her shock and sadness at the two fires that gutted parts of Parliament. She was providing an update on the status of Parliament following this morning’s blaze.

The Speaker says the two fires have hampered Parliamentary officials’ progress in preparing for the reopening of Parliament, the State of the Nation (SONA), and other events that take place at the National Assembly.

Dependent on the severity of the damages caused by the fire, an alternative venue will be determined where the annual SONA will be held.

Meanwhile, the fire at the Old Assembly in the Cape Town CBD has spread, gutting several offices. Mayoral Committee Member for Safety and Security JP Smith praised the City’s Fire and Rescue for responding swiftly. However, Smith expressed his concern over Parliament’s fire detectors.

“It’s concerning that a building of national importance suffered two fires in this short period. This is indicative of either negligent procedure or a building that is due for maintenance” says Smith. An assessment is being done to determine the exact cause of the fire. 

The following road closures are in effect:

– Plein Street at Roeland

– Commercial and Roeland at Hope Street

– St. John’s Street at Vrede Street

– Commercial at Buitenkant Street


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