Downgrade To Junk Status: Jimmy Manyi Slams SA For Overreacting


Jimmy Manyi slams SA: There is no gainsaying the fact that South Africa has been a good investment opportunity across Africa as many multinationals see the country as the gateway to other African countries.

As a result, the country has been a hot investment spot for investors from across the globe.

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Following the recent downgrade of South Africa’s foreign-currency debt, however, most businesses stalled at the capital market and elsewhere.

Till date, opposition parties have blamed president Jacob Zuma for the downgrade, which they described as the first of its kind since the dawn of democracy.

As cries for an economically stable South Africa swell, pro-Zuma cadres believe South Africans are overreacting to the devastating downgrade.

Mzwanele Jimmy Manyi, Zuma’s most vocal supporter and president of the Progressive Professionals’ Forum says the downgrading of SA to junk status is no big deal neither is it a catastrophe, as widely acclaimed.

He rather called for a radical economic transformation and a black-majority inclusive economy – which he said are the only gateways to the desired change.

Although Manyi partly admitted that the junk status will surely affect everyone, he urged South Africans to tame their voices on the matter.

“Junk status is not this catastrophic thing that people have defined it [to be]. It’s disingenuous to say it will affect the poor. Yes, it will affect the poor, but it’s disingenuous to use that when in South Africa we have a history of not being in junk status but poverty has never come down,” the PPF president said.

The Gupta Family

]Speaking in an interview on his relationship with the Gupta family, Manyi said South Africans are fighting the family because they disrupted the interests of white monopoly capital, adding the family has not been found guilty of the state capture allegation levelled against them.

The controversial businessman, who is also a staunch advocate against the notion of “white monopoly capital” said he is not ‘Guptaphobic’ and would like people to be cured of that disease.

Cabinet Reshuffle

President Jacob Zuma’s latest cabinet reshuffle was one of the positive steps the president has taken since he came into power, according to Jimmy Manyi.

He said he was so excited on the night Zuma removed Pravin Gordhan and his deputy Jonas Mcebisi from the National Treasury, adding that a critical mass of black people is needed at top positions.

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The removal of former finance minister Pravin Gordhan and his deputy Mcebisi Jonas from Treasury and the appointment of new Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba contributed immensely to the SA’s downgrade to junk by S&P Global Ratings and Fitch.

The downgrades came one week after Gigaba’s appointment. Many argue that South Africa could become an attractive investment destination for those who wish to take a “longer-term view of the country and continent” if the rand weakens under Gigaba in the near future.