The world is changing fast and to keep up you need local knowledge with global context.
The brashness of cronyism in South Africa is sometimes breathtaking. Unlike elsewhere on earth, those “businessmen” who have benefitted from President Jacob Zuma’s network of patronage don’t shirk from being associated with their benefactor. Indeed, they cannot jump high enough when Number One needs them, delighting in publicly expressing loyalty. The immigrant Gupta family the most obvious and effusive, having built a State-funded media enterprise in appreciation of State issued licences and contracts on which their wealth has been created. This kind of thing might just be another downside of a young democracy. That a country needs to work through the pain of a period when those elected to office presume it delivers them ownership of the public purse to allocate and distribute at their personal whim. Eventually, though, those funding the Treasury, the taxpaying base, do tire to this inefficient allocation of their contribution to national capital. And as we saw during the Apartheid era, slowly they start avoiding, then evading and eventually actually physically departing to another geography where they feel their taxes are better appreciated. Already wavering taxpayers won’t be celebrating today’s public proclamation by the “Friends of Jacob Zuma” that all their cornered patron need do is ask and they will settle his bills. Loyalty to the flawed carries a huge price. As these cronies are sure to discover in time. – Alec Hogg
By Amanda Khoza and Jenni Evans, News24
Cyril Ramaphosa: The Audio Biography
Listen to the story of Cyril Ramaphosa's rise to presidential power, narrated by our very own Alec Hogg.