Rich flock to Sandton, Cape Town central

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Where do South Africa’s wealthiest people live? A report from London-based consultancy WealthInsight sheds some light on their geographical distribution.

With 36 multimillionaires, Sandhurst accounts for the largest proportion of Johannesburg’s ultra high net worth individuals (UHNWIs). Bryanston accounts for the second-largest percentage, “although it is a significantly larger suburb than the likes of Sandhurst, Hyde Park and Westcliff”, the report notes.

“The area known as Sandton, which includes Sandhurst, Sandown, Morningside, Hyde Park, Melrose, Atholl and a number of other suburbs, is home to over half of Johannesburg’s UHNWIs.”

 

The report also notes that a number of South African companies moved their head offices to Sandton, following a rise in crime in Johannesburg’s city centre between 1990 and 2000. “Most notably, the JSE moved to Sandton in September 2000 from the central business district. Sandton has continued to grow strongly between 2000 and 2011 and is considered to be the banking and wealth centre of South Africa.”

Central Cape Town accounts for the highest proportion of that city’s UHNWIs (17 percent). The bulk of these are based in the Waterfront Marina, Higgovale, Green Point, Oranjezicht and Tamboerskloof.

According to WealthInsight research, Camps Bay, in second place, is home to the largest number of South African homes worth more than R20 million, while Clifton, in third place, is home to the largest number of South African homes worth over R50m. Clifton is also the most expensive residential area in the country.

 

Clifton and Bantry Bay in particular are hotspots for wealthy foreign billionaires who own some of the largest properties in these areas. The report notes: “These individuals are not included in our count as they are based in other countries. Other wealthy Cape Town areas with more than one billionaire include Hout Bay, Newlands, Upper Claremont, Kalk Bay and Simon’s Town.”

 

Mangaung

It is perhaps the nature of political parties to talk with a forked tongue. It invariably involves the use of words with lots of letters which bamboozle the author of the message as well as those who are intended to receive the message.

Take, for example, the Economic Transformation and Rural Development and Land Reform chapter on resolutions taken at the June policy conference of the ANC. This forms part of a lengthy document on “Recommendations from the 4th National Policy Conference, June 2012”.

This is an important chapter because its contents will be debated at next week’s national conference in Mangaung. It notes that the State Intervention in the Mining Sector (Sims) report carried a number of policy recommendations concerning ownership and control “that can be processed at the (Mangaung) conference”.

 

Intriguingly, last week the Government Communication and Information System got into hot water when it suggested that a task team on the iron ore and steel sector had recommended that export taxes should be imposed. The Department of Trade and Industry said these taxes were intended only for the scrap metal sector.

Yet the policy recommendations say specifically: “The state should develop strategies to identify and manage strategic minerals in the national interest. Instruments to support beneficiation and competitive pricing of these strategic resources include the use of targeted export taxes.”

Now we know how the authors of the cabinet briefing document came up with this idea, which was hastily contradicted by the Department of Trade and Industry.

The policy document also says some of the Sims recommendations “do not require consideration by [the Mangaung] conference… but will be referred to NEC legkotla (sic) for auctioning (sic: actioning)”.

Any ideas that policy positions could be sold by the ANC national executive committee to the highest bidder must, at once, be cast from the mind.

 

Denel

Trade union Solidarity said yesterday it had received verbal confirmation that all 523 aircraft specialists at Denel Aviation/AMG would be retrenched because of the cancellation by the SA Air Force (SAAF) of its contract for aircraft maintenance with the company.

This follows the Department of Defence giving Denel Aviation/AMG notice in June last year that it would cancel this contract. However, negotiations were then held to amend and possibly review the contract, but the SAAF last month reviewed its decision and disclosed it would not proceed with a new contract with the Denel unit.

These events raise a number of questions, not least of which is who will be providing aircraft maintenance services to the SAAF from April, particularly as these skills are unlikely to be freely available.

This raises another issue highlighted by Solidarity: the possibility of the SAAF taking over the employment contracts of some of Denel’s technicians. Solidarity stressed this issue had not been raised by the SAAF and, in such an event, a section 197 notice of the Labour Relations Act must be issued for the transfer of contracts of employment, with the act also stipulating that employees’ conditions of service and remuneration must be kept on the same level when transferred.

“We are concerned that the air force, to cut back on expenses, will wait until all the employees have been retrenched before appointing some of them on a lower salary to do the same work,” said Solidarity spokesman Jack Loggenberg.

It must surely be illegal in terms of the Labour Relations Act for the SAAF to attempt this. Surely the Labour Department would not allow private companies to get away with this and must ensure the SAAF complies with the act – as it is supposed to do with all other entities in the country.

 

Edited by Peter DeIonno. With contributions from Ethel Hazelhurst, Donwald Pressly and Roy Cokayne.

 



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