Ebrahim Patel: The man behind the mask
The ANC knows that a ‘command-and-control approach won’t work’, says the controversial minister who has been the target of rage and frustration over lockdown rules governing t-shirts, sandals, crop-bottoms and e-commerce. He says he would rather use as little regulation as possible and to have trust in the private sector –and, as a supporter of cabinet collegiality, he is staying mum on the tobacco ban
Ebrahim Patel, the open-toed-shoe bogeyman of the anti-lockdown brigade, doesn’t mind being held up as the poster-child of the "irrational" Covid-19 rules.
"Well, we’re a democracy," he shrugs, during a three-hour interview with the FM. "Some of it may be unfair, but if you have to choose between unfair criticism on the one hand and a cowed, scared population on the other hand, it’s a no-brainer that it’s better to live in a society in which people can express their views."