Private corporate agenda to capture SAA
28 September 2017
Mmusi Maimane, leader of the “Democratic Alliance” (DA), is propagating an agenda to land SAA in the hands of private corporate interests.
Conveying state assets to private interests, whether you call it a sell-off or privatisation, is a strategy of corporate capture of state assets. What are we fighting right now as genuinely concerned South Africans? We are fighting the capture of the state and its assets by private corporate interests, no matter how its agents and their beneficiaries frame it and regardless of who they are.
We need a democratic developmental state that appreciates the importance of productive assets; a state that will make public enterprises vibrant, effective and successful in the interests of the people as a whole rather than a few. There is nothing necessarily inherent about success with private corporations. They often fail, causing serious economic crisis such the 2008 global economic crisis that is yet to end, and are bailed out by states using tax payers monies. Large corporations such as General Motors and even banks were bailed out by the state in the US after the eruption of the crisis and so were the African Banks of this world in South Africa.
There are corrupt, collusive and unethical private corporations as we have seen in the built environment, food industry, steel sector, etc. in South Africa. History is littered with evidence. Surely private corporations such as the Guptas’ Oakbay Investments, KPMGs, Bell Potingers and Trillian Capitals of this world cannot be regarded as innocent in the governance decay that has been suffered by some of our state authorities and public enterprises. The destruction of SAA, which must be rebuilt to become successful, was not without the role played by private corporate interests.
Issued by Alex Mohubetswane Mashilo, 28 September 2017