In this week’s episode of Editing Allowed Peter Bruce and the panel discussed the narrative of white monopoly capital as explored in the latest edition of the Financial Mail and more of the week’s news highlights.

Deputy editor of the Financial Mail Sikonathi Mantshantsha said the bigger debate should be on how we can grow the economy for every citizen regardless of race.

“The reality is that we have a very low growth economy which then takes money off people’s hands... The debate we should be having is how do we grow the cake for all of us. The fact that we have 23% black ownership means very little because that is money that is locked away or hidden in pension funds and retirement funds that’s not accessible to the people that need to be running and starting businesses with it.”

With the majority of SA’s large industries being owned and run by white people, Peter Bruce asked whether it was possible to change this.

Business Day editor Tim Cohen said the this would be very difficult to do. “The reason why this whole white monopoly capital narrative is so evil is that it pits the whole world into an us and them dichotomy. The point is to try and bind the economy and open up the economy for new entrepreneurs in new areas.”

Mantshantsha said there had been instances where black capital had not worked in favour of black people on the ground. “We have black capital now in the hands of the state, the likes of Eskom, that are not behaving any better than white capital. They’re behaving like businesses and in some instances even worse than apartheid businesses themselves.

You see all the destruction that Eskom’s incapacity visited upon this country. It dis-empowered a whole lot more black people than apartheid ever did. Now we need to stand up and start fixing the economy instead of them (government) diverting our attention talking about white monopoly capital. They should look at themselves, look at this government; what has it done to kick start this economy.”

Cohen agreed with Mantshantsha saying that President Jacob Zuma was trying to move the blame from his own government onto some “mythological force”.

In part two of the discussion, the panel also discussed Pravin Gordhan’s budget tightrope, the sustained attacks levelled against him and Treasury by some government ministers and the possibility of a cabinet reshuffle. They also weigh in on the dire state of affairs at Eskom.

Editing Allowed airs tonight on Business Day TV channel 412

Please sign in or register to comment.