By Alec Hogg
At the risk of being overly sceptical, its quite bizarre to see South Africa attracting back fair weather friends. Among them British Prime Minister Theresa May, whose visit last week felt like a long lost relative suddenly appearing at a dowager’s deathbed trying to squeeze into her will. The last time any UK prime minister visited the country was in 2013 when David Cameron popped over for selfies at Madiba’s memorial.
Although it is the second biggest foreign investor in Africa (just behind the US) the UK has fallen far behind in SA’s affections. SA president Cyril Ramaphosa is in Beijing on a State visit, reciprocating numerous trips made by his counterpart Xi Jinping since 2013. China’s trade with Africa is now eight times that of the UK’s.
Last night SA received another belated approach for friendship, this time from a second exposed global consulting company that banked the State Capture bucks. As with the much pilloried McKinsey, it will be hard for South Africans to hold back the crocodile tears.
Bain & Company is only now “undertaking a deep and extensive investigation” into the way its work led to SARS employees being “mistreated and disrespected”. Bain’s reports were the tool that ejected over 100 SARS executives, documented in detail by Johann van Loggerenberg’s best selling book, Rogue, published 18 months ago.