The seven items at the top of SA’s agenda this week
Heading the agenda in a busy week are Pravin Gordhan’s appearance at the state capture inquiry, and the Reserve Bank’s decision on interest rates
1. Pravin Gordhan at the state capture inquiry: the public enterprises minister will testify at the Zondo commission on Monday, where he is expected to focus on the nuclear deal, and the attempt to capture Treasury and various state-owned enterprises during his tenure as finance minister. Mzwanele Manye returns to the commission on Friday.
2. South Africa braces for a rate hike: The Reserve Bank announces its decision on Thursday, after a two-day meeting. Analysts say it will be a close call, but the Bank’s intention to steer inflation back towards the 4.5% midpoint of the 3%-6% target range will prevail over worries about a fragile economy.
3. President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Bosasa headache: the president’s campaign team is in crisis mode this week, writes Natasha Marrian, undertaking to audit all monies, from more than 200 donors, that flowed into its coffers ahead of his election as ANC president.
4. Consumer inflation: Consumers continued to feel the effects of rising fuel prices in October, and inflation as measured by the consumer price index (CPI) is expected to have ticked up to 5.1%, from 4.9% in September. But a fall in fuel prices should ease the pressure on consumers in coming months. Stats SA releases inflation data on Wednesday.
5. PIC inquiry: the inquiry into the PIC gets under way on Monday, writes Linda Ensor. The commission, headed by retired judge Lex Mpati, is off to a late start. Still lacking premises and staff, it is under pressure to deliver its interim report to President Cyril Ramaphosa by February 15. The commission begins work as the PIC faces a legal challenge from the DA to release details of its R70bn unlisted investment portfolio.
6. Deputy President David Mabuza in the National Assembly: he faces MPs’ questions on Thursday in what could be an awkward session for him, given recent speculation over his recent visit to Russia for medical treatment.
7. First German state visit to South African in 20 years: Ramaphosa hosts German President Frank-WalterSteinmeier on Tuesday.