ANC’s worn-out ideologies threaten national collapse

Visvin Reddy is the President of the African Democratic Change (ADeC). Picture: Tumi Pakkies/ Independent Newspapers

Visvin Reddy is the President of the African Democratic Change (ADeC). Picture: Tumi Pakkies/ Independent Newspapers

Published Nov 26, 2023


As a concerned observer who has consistently voiced apprehensions about South Africa’s trajectory, it is disheartening to witness the nation teetering on the brink of self-destruction.

The root cause of the impending crisis lies squarely at the feet of the ANC and its antiquated ideologies.

My warnings have not fallen on deaf ears. A recent two-year study by economists at Harvard University echoes my sentiments, declaring that the ANC’s reliance on cadre deployment strategy and the blind pursuit of Broad-Based BEE are steering the country towards collapse.

The strategy, a relic from the Struggle era, has proven detrimental to the development of a competent civil service.

The Harvard report rightly emphasises the urgent need to abandon the approach, which prioritises political loyalty over merit. The consequences of placing unqualified individuals in key government positions are evident in mismanagement of critical sectors.

Take Transnet, where the focus on meeting BEE targets has overshadowed the need for skilled and experienced personnel. The result? Chaos at the Durban port, marked by a staggering 71 000 containers stuck at sea. Such negligence has transformed the once-vital port into the world’s 341st out of 348 ports for performance – a damning indictment on the impact of misguided policies.

Similarly, Eskom and SAA serve as cautionary tales of the detrimental effects of affirmative action policies. While the initiatives were designed to address historical injustices, the ANC’s insistence on prioritising race over competence has led to dire consequences.

It is perplexing that after three decades of democratic governance, ANC leaders persist in employing rhetoric reminiscent of the pre1994 era. The continual narrative of liberation Struggle and the scapegoating of apartheid legacies have become convenient shields to deflect accountability. The reality is that South Africa’s democracy is in its third decade, and there can be no excuses for the government’s failure to address the challenges facing the nation.

The Harvard report’s assertion that political bottlenecks hinder “critical decisions” is a stark reflection of the ANC’s misplaced priorities. The writing is on the wall, and urgent action is the only recourse to avert a national catastrophe.

* Visvin Reddy is the President of the African Democratic Change(ADeC)

** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Media.

Cape Argus

Do you have something on your mind; or want to comment on the big stories of the day? We would love to hear from you. Please send your letters to [email protected].

All letters to be considered for publication, must contain full names, addresses and contact details (not for publication)