Sparkling Trevor Manuel a reminder of the talent the ANC has lost

By Alec Hogg

It was a privilege to yesterday see and hear SA’s former finance minister Trevor Manuel. He was one of the star attractions at The Insurance Conference 2016, a two day annual event attended by 1 300. My MC role afforded a front row seat.

Trevor, 59, was in sparkling form. And provided a sad reminder of the talent lost by the ANC. Think Jay Naidoo, Tito Mboweni, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, the Moleketis, Cheryl Carolus and Ronnie Kasrils.

Manuel was his usual forthright self, echoing concerns of many when bemoaning how accountability has disappeared. A point picked up by the conference’s other star attraction, political commentator and best-selling author Justice Malala, who said budgets have become meaningless – witness improvements to President Jacob Zuma’s Nkandla home. Budgeted at R27m, they ended up costing taxpayers R246m.

Despite the near ten-fold inflation, nobody has been held accountable. Nobody has gone to jail. Heaven help SA if the R1trn nuclear build programme goes ahead. Something Malala believes is probable.

Former South African Finance Minister Trevor Manuel
Former South African Finance Minister Trevor Manuel