EE Amendment Act: DA to join legal action by Solidarity – Michael Cardo

MP says govt should not be getting in the way of business given the 32.7% unemployment rate

DA to join legal action by Solidarity to stop the Employment Equity Amendment Act

13 April 2023

The DA is dismayed that President Ramaphosa has signed into law the Employment Equity Amendment Act. This follows the DA urging the President to not sign the Bill in an open letter issued last year. The DA will now be joining the legal action being undertaken by Solidarity to stop this draconian race-based Act in court.

The DA is firm in its support of the principle of non-racialism, as underpinned by the Constitution, and rejects the categorisation of South Africans along race-based lines. The DA believes in creating an open and thriving economy, which will lead to prosperity for all South Africans. This Act serves only to reinforce the racial categories of the past, rather than promoting much needed economic growth and job creation.

The Act will confer on the Minister wide-ranging powers to set numerical race-based employment targets across varying sectors and regions. The Act will further require employers to secure compliance certificates issued by the Minister, in order to do business with the state. This will increase inefficiency and add further unnecessary red-tape when conducting business in South Africa. Government should not be getting in the way of business given the 32.7% unemployment rate experienced in the final quarter of 2022.

The Employment Equity Act will not bring about the transformation of the workplace it purports to seek. Instead, it will further impoverish the vast majority of South Africans, while enriching a thin sliver of politically connected individuals as has been experienced under the policy of Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE).

The provisions of this Act will result in a further exodus of skills from South Africa and introduce large amounts of unnecessary red tape for employers wishing to do business with the state. This will lead to further stagnation of the South African economy, and a lack of economic opportunity for those who need it most. South African businesses are already struggling under the weight of a stagnant economy and crippling load-shedding. Further race-based meddling by the ANC in the employment composition of private businesses will only result in reduced investment, declining economic growth and high unemployment across the country.

It is clear that the ANC is unwilling to abandon its obsession with race-based central planning and control, leading to further inefficiency and hardship for all South Africans. The DA will therefore be supporting Solidarity's legal action to stop this unconstitutional race-based Act in its tracks.

Issued by Michael Cardo, DA Shadow Minister for Employment and Labour, 13 April 2023