As it enters a tense political season, South Africa s governingparty is under pressure to adopt a more radical agenda ofexpropriation, nationalization, black economic ownership, andgreater government control of the justice system. More Related to this Story Canada’s ties with South Africa dissolve in neglect Zuma drops legal case against S.Africa gallery that displayedgenitalia painting Africa South Africa’s Jacob Zuma plays victim over ‘genitalia’ painting No final decisions have been made, but some influential factions inthe African National Congress are pushing to transform thecourts, the media, the economy, and even the much-praisedconstitution. In South Africa, transform is code language for introducing agreater level of black ownership and, with it, usually a degreeof government control. It s an impulse that remains powerful among many politicians inthe ANC, fuelled by a dangerous mixture of high unemployment, slowgrowth, weak leadership and fierce feuding within the governingparty. The ANC is preparing for two crucial conferences.
The first, to beheld near Johannesburg this month, will debate the ANC s keypolicies. The second, in December, will decide whether Jacob Zumawill remain the party s leader. The policy conference will map out the so-called second transition 18 years after the first transition that ended apartheid andmade Nelson Mandela the first democratically elected president. Some ANC factions are demanding that the second transition mustinclude economic nationalization, farm expropriation, amendments tothe constitution and tighter controls on the courts.
In the past, radical proposals were vetoed by leaders such as Mr.Mandela, who rejected nationalization. But now, in the heatedclimate of the unofficial campaign to topple Mr. Zuma, the radicalvoices are becoming bolder and more aggressive. Leaders of the ANC youth league are warning that blacks will seizewhite-owned farms in a Zimbabwe-style takeover if the farmersrefuse to surrender their land. They are angry that the vastmajority of South Africa s farmland is still owned by whites,almost two decades after apartheid ended. Flat Panel Led Lighting
Whites must voluntarily give up their land if they won t want tosee young black people flooding their farms, said Ronald Lamola,deputy president of the ANC youth league, in a speech this week. The youth league is also repeating its demands for thenationalization of the mining industry, even though the governmenthas rejected the idea. And some union leaders, allied with the ANC,are calling for the nationalization of all major industries, notjust mining. Other ANC factions, meanwhile, are taking aim at the judiciary. Onemember of the ANC s national executive, Ngoako Ramatlhodi, thisweek attacked South African judges for thwarting the will of theANC government. Led Underground Light Manufacturer
Mr. Ramatlhodi, a deputy minister of correctional services who hassignificant support in the governing party, wants reforms to theconstitution and the courts to prevent the judiciary from blockinggovernment actions. And he made it clear that he is blaming SouthAfrica s white minority for the court decisions that go againstthe government. There is a tyranny, a minority tyranny, that is using stateinstitutions to undermine democratic processes, Mr. Solar Powered Security Lights Manufacturer
Ramatlhodisaid in a speech at an ANC event. I have seen now in our countrythe courts are being used to replace the executive. He was apparently angered by several recent cases in which thecourts have halted or overturned government decisions on topappointments in the intelligence and prosecution agencies. Lastyear he launched an attack on the constitution, saying it gave toomuch power to the courts. The media, too, are facing demands for black ownership.
SouthAfrica s parliament is holding public hearings this month on theownership and control of the print media. On average, only 14 percent of the print media are owned by blacks, according to a recentreport. One senior ANC leader and wealthy businessman, Cyril Ramaphosa, isreported to be considering the purchase of one of South Africa sbiggest newspaper chains, Independent Newspapers, which wouldcertainly increase the ANC s influence over the media. So far, the demands for state control of the economic and judiciallevers have been mostly rhetorical. The ANC has slapped down theyouth leaders who called for expropriation and nationalization.
It is not ANC policy to expropriate land without compensation,and personally I don t think it will work, said Gwede Mantashe,the ANC s secretary-general. More Related to this Story South African gold town struggles to find a future.