Saturday, October 21, 2017
   
Text Size

Site Search powered by Ajax

Malusi Gigaba: Need to 'radically transform economy'

Newly appointed finance minister Gagiba sets out goals as pressure on President Zuma increases after cabinet reshuffle.

South Africa's new finance minister, Malusi Gigaba, said there was a need "to radically transform the South African economy" as pressure mounted on President Jacob Zuma after a dramatic cabinet reshuffle that rocked the country's markets and currency.

On Friday, Zuma, head of the ruling African National Congress (ANC), said he was making room for new talent and ideas, as he announced changes to 10 of the country's 35 ministries, including finance, energy, police and tourism.

His move to replace Pravin Gordhan with Gigaba drew widespread criticism. 

Gigaba, though, said he was committed to protecting South Africa's cherished investment-grade credit ratings, which analysts have said are threatened by Gordhan's removal.

Radical economic change in the political language of ANC means the redistribution of wealth, land and opportunity to the black majority.

"The ownership of wealth and assets remains concentrated in the hands of a small part of the population. This must change," Gigaba, who was previously Home Affairs minister, said.

"I am fully aware that we are at a highly politicised, polarised and contentious moment in the history of our young democracy. I will not be distracted by external issues."

But he added fiscal policy would not be done simply in the interests of big business and capital.

"For too long, there has been a narrative or perception around Treasury, that it belongs primarily and exclusively to 'orthodox' economists, big business, powerful interests and international investors. With respect, this is a people's government," he said.

On Thursday, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) opposition party appealed to the country's highest court to order parliament to begin impeachment proceedings against the president for lying to the legislative body. 

The EFF called it "a last resort", with party leader Julius Malema accusing parliament, which is dominated by the ANC, of failing in its duty to hold the president accountable.

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, who is one of the leading candidates to replace Zuma as ANC president, expressed his "strong objection" to Gordhan's removal, describing it as "totally, totally unacceptable".

Hundreds of protesters also gathered in front of the parliament building in Cape Town, carrying posters reading: "Zuma must fall" and "Hands off the treasury".

Some placards called Zuma a "tsotsi", a South African slang word for "criminal". 


blog comments powered by Disqus

Subscribe via RSS or Email:

Kenya political crisis deepens in r...

Read More

South Sudan: UN, US failed to preve...

Read More

Farmajo blames al-Shabab for Mogadi...

Read More

Senior Kenyan electoral official re...

Read More

Critic of Rwanda's president asks f...

Read More

Mogadishu massacre: A gravedigger's...

Read More

Global_News

Shia mosques targeted in separate attacks, with at least 30 people killed in Kabul and up to 10 more in Ghor province.

Read More

Donation

Thanks to all of our supporters for your generosity and your encouragement of an independent press!

Enter Amount:

Featured_Author

Login






Login reminder Forgot login?

Subscribe to MWC News Alert

Email Address

Subscribe in a reader Facebok page Twitter page

Week in Pictures

Diwali: The festival of lights

Is it autumn yet in Europe?