Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

13 April 2014

South Africa: It's Just the ANC's Slow Jump To the Right?

analysis

In South Africa, economic policy is, to put it mildly, contested terrain. With our history having created a skewed scenario of 'haves' and 'have-nots', there is an uncomfortable element to these arguments. In short, to argue about economics is to argue about race and our past.

Which is one of the reasons that every time there is a slight change in government, or an election, everyone both locally and abroad starts to fret and worry and prepare for economic policy Armageddon. Knowing full well that the structure of our economy is simply unfair and wrong, those who are the 'haves', and those who have invested money in this economic structure, worry deeply. But over the last five years the ANC itself appears to have actually, slowly, started to shift to the right. Under President Jacob Zuma. For real.

In 2009, Jacob Zuma was about to become Mr President. He had emerged victorious from the rain and mud at Polokwane in 2007, and after brushing aside a few legal matters, was headed for the Union Buildings. (And towards Nkandla, but that's another story.) At the time, there were two major pressing concerns for most of the politically aware....

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