If you read Wits University academic Chris Malikane’s published peer-reviewed work, you might find yourself agreeing with his conclusions as it cites evidence and argues for economic policy objectives that fit with settled economic science. Yet the same man, who was appointed an adviser to Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba almost immediately after he took office, said this weekend SA should go through a Zimbabwean and Venezuelan phase, complete with nationalisation without compensation and an armed struggle if necessary. Who is this Jekyll and Hyde? His latest peer-reviewed article, in African Development Review, a journal of the African Development Bank, presents a study of several Southern African countries to assess the link between economic growth, foreign direct investment and democracy. By examining statistics from those markets, Malikane and his co-author found that foreign direct investment "has a direct positive effect on economic growth" and that democratic institutions, incl...

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