In her opinion piece, tourism minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane lashed out at those who have criticised the Tourism Relief Fund for handing out benefits to businesses according to their BEE status (“Those opposing Tourism Relief Fund don’t respect B-BBEE”, April 17).
While Kubayi-Ngubane’s utterances are entirely consistent with the ANC’s approach to empowerment, they also illustrate the sleight of hand often used by ANC politicians (and many supporters of race-based quotas) whereby they conflate being against BEE with being against the idea that black people should be empowered and enjoy prosperity.
Kubayi-Ngubane says those against BEE “still hold the view that the participation of black people in the economy, especially as owners of the means of production, is a negation of entrepreneurship and growth”. But that is where she is being either daft or dishonest.
Her party has pursued race-based quotas for almost three decades, and all the evidence suggests these policies have stifled the participation of (poor) black people in the economy and instead encouraged rent-seeking. This has resulted in a tiny minority of well-connected black people benefiting immensely, at the expense of the vast majority of (mostly black) South Africans.
Ricky Klopper, Via e-mail
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