On Sunday evening finance minister Tito Mboweni and Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago held an extraordinary media conference. It was extraordinary, said Mboweni, because other than the presentation of the budget it is seldom that the media have the opportunity to talk to both the finance minister and the central bank governor at the same table, or in this case on the same phone line.

As nothing new was announced, it seemed the objective of the call was to impress upon us that the narrative that the government is doing nothing about the fiscal and monetary dimensions of the Covid-19 crisis is false. Yet with governments in the developed world saying they will pump $7-trillion into their economies and many stepping in to backstop corporates, the SA government response has seemed underdone...

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