Thulas Nxesi. Picture: SUNDAY WORLD
Thulas Nxesi. Picture: SUNDAY WORLD

Thulas “Fire Pool” Nxesi has manifestly given little thought to the consequences of his Employment Equity Amendment Bill, which is designed to legislate penalties against employers for failing to comply with affirmative action. 

For one thing, he clearly fails to understand that empowering the government to regulate sector targets (a cornerstone of the bill) must be a non-starter. Consider the failures of all command economies and it becomes evident that state planners come a distant second to market forces.

For another, a convincing priority in today’s SA is to tackle endemic unemployment. Compliance with Nxesi’s affirmative action objective implies the forced employment of unqualified and incompetent people simply to comply with predetermined ratios. The outcome? Failed, formerly profitable, businesses in the wake of which the nation’s unemployment statistics would burgeon.

A growing, vibrant economy would solve a great many of SA’s pressing problems. Nxesi’s solution would not only fail to solve the problems but would dramatically shrink the economy.

Someone please stop this disillusioned individual in his tracks. Even his advanced knowledge of Nkandla fire pools would be insufficient to douse the flames.

John Spira
Johannesburg