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Assessing and promoting civil and minority rights in South Africa.

[Source: Daily Maverick by Stephen Grootes.]

Recent evidence has started to give some hope that corruption in the form of “state capture” may soon come to an end. This is partly because President Jacob Zuma’s time as ANC leader is nearly over, and partly because the net appears to be closing around the Gupta family. The behaviour of two of Zuma’s sons, Edward and Duduzane, this past week also suggests that some in that camp are desperate. This means that those who support Cyril Ramaphosa’s campaign to become the next leader of the ANC believe that his ascension would signal the end of corruption. That, unfortunately, is unlikely, for reasons that play directly into how the ANC’s leadership contest could be settled.

There are many forms of corruption. There is the moral corruption of someone who presides over a system that is immoral, and yet doesn’t tolerate any form of monetary corruption. Think whichever man rules over Dubai. There is the immoral corruption of the apartheid state, which, as Hennie van Vuuren has reminded us so well, combined with a sort of monetary corruption. And then there is the common or garden corruption for financial gain. There is no interest in actual governance or ideology, simply in money. It is this third type of corruption that would probably best describe the form of state capture disease that currently afflicts us.

All the hallmarks are there. Contracts are given to people because of kickbacks, sometimes state resources are simply stolen, such as our Strategic Fuel Fund. Money is moved around incredibly quickly: what was once cash for a dairy farm ends up paying for a wedding. This is the kind of corruption that our democracy now needs to focus on fighting, and defeating

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South Africa at a Glance
59 620 000 (mid 2020 estimate)
2.2% y/y in June 2020 (CPI) & +0.5 y/y in June 2020 (PPI)
-2.0% q/q (1st quarter of 2020)
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