For half a decade, South Africans have been exposed to a deluge of evidence that showed that almost every one of the country’s state-owned entities (SOEs) was being looted by a politically connected group of elites — at massive cost to ordinary citizens.

The leaked Gupta e-mails, former public protector Thuli Madonsela’s State of Capture report and the commission of inquiry it birthed, and multiple other forensic investigations, court cases and inquiries have made it clear that these parastatals were treated as bottomless cookie jars rather than viable and ethically operated businesses.

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