Report: There’s No Such Thing As Radical Economic Transformation, Its Zuma’s New Scam

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Zuma’s new policy about bringing a radical economic transformation has been critically analyzed by an Independent Media columnist and author Eusebius McKaiser who believes the programme newly instituted by Zuma, is meaningless and a political scam.

In his usual column on Mail and Guardian, the author described Zuma’s ‘radical economic transformation’ as a meaningless phrase which is now almost as much a part of other South Africa’s lexicon as koeksister, chisa nyama, the commission of inquiry and Nkandla.

Relating his shock at how the new “phrase” is being circulated by Zuma’s administration as a sure way to redirect the economy to a promised land, Eusebius McKaiser said the so-called “radical economic transformation” is a bit of gibberish that should not be taken seriously.

“For at least 10 years now I have grappled with popular words and phrases such as ‘ubuntu’ and ‘the national question’. I may have to give up soon. Life’s too short. This brings me to the latest such phrase that I outright refuse to grapple with. I am referring to ‘radical economic transformation’. It truly is a bit of gibberish that should not be taken seriously,” he said.

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Earlier this year, President Jacob Zuma launched his sweeping programme of “radical economic transformation” which according to him, would seek to change the ownership and control of the economy through legislation and empowerment regulations.

giving further details on his new programme, Zuma said having just political freedom isn’t just enough without economic emancipation. Hence, the radical economic Transformation will bring about the fundamental change in the structure, systems, institutions and patterns of ownership, management, and control of the economy.

“Today we are starting a new chapter of radical economic transformation. We are moving beyond words.”Zuma said, adding that government would “utilize to the maximum strategic levers that are available to the state” including legislation.

Reacting to this, McKaiser wrote that the words are meaningless and since it was uttered by someone like Zuma, the intent behind such words needs to be well unmasked.



“A functional analysis of the purpose the phrase ‘radical economic transformation’ serves is much more important than the terms Zuma gives to it. Therefore, we should start by unmasking the intent behind the phrase’s usage, especially when uttered by the likes of President Jacob Zuma,” he said.

He said the fact that Zuma is already losing grip of his allies faster than the rand is losing value, he has to try both to reward his remaining allies and to ensnare some of his critics.

Hence the newly coined meaningless phrase whose function is to persuade allies in the left of the alliance that he, Zuma, is still committed to fighting economic injustices inherent in a neoliberal, capitalist economic order, McKaiser said.

“Zuma, we now know, turned out to be a disaster so horrifically bad that if Zuma and Mbeki were to run for president of the country tomorrow in a makeshift election, the likes of Blade Nzimande and Zwelinzima Vavi would have nightmares about who to vote for. They would probably abstain or cross the border into a place called exile.

“Zuma thinks that by using meaningless phrases such as ‘radical economic transformation’ he can regain the historic Polokwane moment. This foolish man does not accept that his time has expired.”

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Eusebius McKaiser concluded by saying that the country is currently experiencing a painful final movie scene that the directors- the ANC NEC- should have cut much earlier but failed to do so because of their self-serving creative differences.

If Zuma wanted to transform the economy radically, he should have done so from 2009. He had the power all along. But he failed because he never gave a damn about anyone other than himself, his family and his handlers, he ended saying.

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