Most of the country’s major political players agree that the status quo cannot remain where the economy is concerned. There seems to be a consensus that revitalising the economy must come with changes that embrace black business; not as participants, but as players.

This came out at the Black Business Council summit where the ANC, EFF, UDM and the IFP were advocating for the inclusion of black businesses in the economy.

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) leader Julius Malema says black people must reclaim the economy.

“We must reclaim our economy. There cannot be a reclaiming of the economy without a fundamental change, there is no way we can transform this economy without disrupting this economy. We need to expropriate our land without compensation.”

The ownership patterns of the South African economy dominated discussions from political formations. The EFF leader was clear that black business must disrupt an economy owned by the white minority to include the black majority.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) wants a more calculated approach. Gwen Ngwenya, the DA’s Head of Policy, says while a disruption in the economy is needed, it has to be done cautiously.

“So whilst there is huge scope for change and disruption, it must be within the bounds of an economy that will allow it to grow and invest in the right kind of socio-economic measures that we would like to see take place.”

On the other hand, the IFP president Velankosini Hlabisa says State-Owned Enterprises shares must be sold to the private sector.

“Selling shares in the parastatals through public-private partnerships, private placements, sales trend via treaty, voucher and coupon system preferential advancement schemes to the previously disadvantaged and economically excluded.”

ANC Spokesperson Pule Mabe says its mission to amend Section 25 of the Constitution will open up the economy.

“We need to give our people the rightful ownership of land so that they can play a greater role in the economy. So as it relates to which land gets to be expropriated or not there is already a process underway that has got to do with the amendment of Section 25 of the Constitution.”

In the video below, political parties engage in a debate at the Black Business Council Summit. 

Not another talk shop

Black business owners want action and not just another talk shop. It will be a while before there’s a significant turnaround of the current economic situation. But politicians are adamant the turnaround should come with significant change and more diversified.

In the video below, the Black Business Council president Sandile Zungu says that there is a misconception that successful black businessmen are corrupt.