In the North West province, a new Premier is being installed and we are here in the thick of the pomp and circumstance surrounding it. It kicked off Thursday with an early morning live broadcast on SABC (South African Broadcast Company) where the new Premier was interviewed, accepted live tweets and audience questions. We were part of the live audience and got a quick meet and greet with him afterwards.
The activities continued Friday for the actual State of the Province Address (SOPA). We submitted our passport info, got all gussied up Friday morning, boarded the bus and picked up the Prof, John and the 3 Master’s students from the University and headed to Parliament. The first change of plans happened when we learned it was moved from Parliament to the Convention Center. Daniel changed directions and got us over to the Convention center where we waited on the bus to see how to proceed. The scene looked like this after awhile … we are getting quite used to waiting around and always have something on hand to do instead.
After awhile we learned that our credentials had not been cleared and while VIP’s just a day earlier, we would not be getting into the SOPA afterall. Off to Plan B where we were invited by incoming Head of Tourism and the current Acting Chief of Staff to join him and other Directors at a different location for breakfast and a briefing. It was not what we had planned, but it turned out to be a positive meeting that moved our project work forward by being introduced to some new potential stakeholders. The morning was definitely salvaged and we were back at the hotel by 1 pm which was an added bonus. We were able to get a few solid hours of project work in that we weren’t expecting to do because of the SOPA. All in all, a good thing we got turned away!
But we couldn’t let our ‘good looks’ go to waste, so we took pics 🙂