The ANC is under pressure to produce policies to change the downward trajectory of SA’s economy. This is the same challenge it faced at its national conference in 2012. Back then, the writing was already on the wall that unless the governing party changed its approach to how it managed the economy, its fortunes would continue to dwindle. As its leaders and members gather in Nasrec this week to choose the party’s future leaders, debates on policy have taken the back seat. The economy is stagnating, with poverty on the increase for the first time since 1994 and inequality widening. Investors, market pundits and ratings agencies lay the blame for this on the government’s doorstep. Nonetheless, delegates to the 54th ANC conference will make important decisions on several issues that will have serious implications for how the economy fares. These include the emotional and racially-fuelled subjects of land restitution, radical social and economic transformation and the transformation of m...

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