Patrick Bond and Mary Galvin report on the recent catastrophic floods in Durban, which have exposed the Cyril Ramaphosa government’s criminal negligence and failure to take action on climate change.
New South African President Cyril Ramaphosa made headlines when the ANC leader backed legal changes that could allow land reform to redistribute land from traditionally powerful white owners to the Black majority.
But this populist posture aside, the new administration is seeking to deepen pro-corporate neoliberalism and austerity.
A brand new World Bank report, The Changing Wealth of Nations 2018, offers evidence of how much poorer Africa is becoming thanks to rampant minerals, oil and gas extraction.
Yet World Bank policies and practices remain oriented to enforcing foreign loan repayments and transnational corporate (TNC) profiteering — thus maintaining the looting.
In Harare, Bulawayo and smaller Zimbabwean cities, hundreds of thousands of citizens joyfully took to the streets on Saturday, November 18, approving a Zimbabwe Defence Force (ZDF) military semi-coup that resolves a long-simmering faction fight within the ruling party and ends the extraordinary career of Robert Mugabe at the age of 93.
Last week a conceptual barrier carefully constructed by South Africa’s elites since 2015 was suddenly cracked at the University of the Witwatersrand Great Hall, by two of the country’s leading economic personalities: Pravin Gordhan, who served as a pro-business finance minister for seven years until being sacked in March, and super-consultant Iraj Abedian, who in 1996 co-authored the country’s post-apartheid structural adjustment programme. Two more solid bourgeois representatives would be hard to find.