It has been another difficult week for the DA. This time, the party’s internal conflicts concern black economic empowerment. The DA’s federal council in July rubbished ANC empowerment policies. The government has sought to increase ownership, management, and control of businesses by blacks, and to use preferential procurement to spread empowerment. But the costly and fronting-prone policy has satisfied neither black nor white businesspeople. BEE has discouraged investment and decreased the efficiency of government expenditure. Empowerment has facilitated patronage relationships between party, state, and business. Ditching the ANC approach may be easy, but identifying a credible alternative is harder. The task fell to the DA’s newly appointed federal policy head, Gwen Ngwenya, a former Institute of Race Relations policy wonk. Her reported preference for disadvantage — rather than race-targeted interventions — has apparently generated controversy in the party. A statement on Monday fr...

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