Zikalala’s Economic Pipedream

No degree of reliance on jargon and buzz words such as “game-changer” by ANC KZN faction leader Sihle Zikalala can disguise what is utter claptrap in claiming “a new economic dawn” awaits KZN (Mercury, November 16 2017).

 His latest half page discourse is premised on the fallacy that South Africa is pursuing “accelerated economic growth.” If only that were true. Instead, job losses continue unabated and economic growth for 2017 is a mere 0,5%. Undeterred by such facts, Zikalala then claims that on the back of this economic growth his pet socialist policy of redistribution and radical economic transformation will be implemented.

 At the same time, Zikalala expects this all to be an “investment attraction” which will be facilitated by a new “one-stop-shop” for business which will “fast-track, unblock and reduce red tape in government.”

 Whilst of course there is merit in attracting business investment, that investment is not going to be forthcoming as long as Zikalala and his ilk seek to ring-fence state contracts exclusively for Africans – the policy he announced last month. Investment is not attracted by terms and conditions that prescribe racial quotas in terms of ownership and participation. Besides, the prospect of economic redistribution does not encourage economic growth.

 Then there is the environment into which Zikalala seeks to attract investment. Thanks to Zikalala and his faction, politically KZN is volatile and unstable. Corruption abounds at provincial and local government levels. Dysfunctionalism is the reality of most municipalities where, as in the case of the lower South Coast, water supply was disrupted for weeks.

The only “game-changer” that can herald a new economic dawn for KZN is the removal of the ANC from power and the application of liberal free enterprise policies premised on merit instead of race and failed socialist ideology It’s not going to be.

Sent into The Mercury and published, 17 November 2017.

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