In his medium-term budget policy statement speech, finance minister Tito Mboweni said: “The average person in China is seven times richer today than 25 years ago. The average person in India has become three and a half times richer over the same period. Meanwhile, the average South African is only 1.3 times richer.”

The government tried to put a positive spin on its dismal record in a 25-year review of its performance that was released last week. But no matter which way one slices the data, SA’s economic performance has been deeply disappointing since Nelson Mandela became president in 1994.

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