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Mantashe’s populism an attempt to shift the blame – Thomas Walters

Author: Thomas Walters

Reports this week quote Gwede Mantashe, Secretary General of the ANC, as “warning” farmers in South Africa to work with the ANC on populist policies such as forced expropriation and capping land ownership, or face a situation similar to what has characterized the agricultural sector in Zimbabwe (see Netwerk24 report).

This statement demonstrates a worrying lack of commitment from the ANC to upholding the Constitution. The remarks also come at a time when the real obstacle to land reform in South Africa is in fact a lack of political will in government to focus on programmes with real potential to accelerate reform. 

Instead we see the ANC resorting to populist statements without dealing with the real substance of why land reform is not progressing at the pace it should, and why there is up to a 90% failure rate in terms of agricultural activity on land already transferred. 


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