DOWN South, patronage and clientelism appears to be slipping away from the ANC and accruing to those who pledge their political futures to the DA and as the DA support in working-class wards creeps up into double digits, so have the economic consequences that appear convenient for Namibia at this stage.
The downfall of the ANC in key economic and political South African hubs are a culmination of populist politics when the ANC removed by impeachment, former South African President Thabo Mbeki in favour of the controversial and questionable then Deputy President Jacob Zuma.
Before vibrant former ANC youth leader Julius Malema served as a pawn to help Zuma remove Mbeki, South African’s economy was in a sober state and the country was regarded as respectable leader on the African continent.
But when Zuma rose to power, corruption escalated across various South African provinces while xenophobia threatened the country’s peace and stability.
Essentially Namibia, in Swapo, is experiencing a similar scare where some political and youth segments are being used to undermine the current stable regime under reigning President Hage Geingob.
Riots and the disrespect of the rule of law, particularly struggle kids (who were mostly born after independence) who have been attacking innocent civilians are but just some of the signs that aim at making our country ungovernable. It has become apparent that the current regime has become unpopular for stopping the rot and keeping treasury expenditure under manageable control rather than spending public funds on corrupt elite schemes. Namibian and South African politics could draw similar parallels in the way that Mbeki was removed because of his principles and attempts to clampdown on the ANC’s corrupt elite. Mbeki’s ethics led to his downfall for the 700 charges of corruption laid against Zuma.
Several years down the line, the same architects who engineered Mbeki’s impeachment, including Malema and Cosatu General Secretary Zwelinzima Vavi are now apologetic for their part in the removal of Mbeki.
Vavi was one of the key supporters of Zuma’s internal ANC battle with Mbeki and a backer in Zuma’s 2009 election campaign, along with Malema, who now leads the Economic Freedom Fighters.
The lessons for Namibia are to appreciate the current Swapo leader and Head of State for the corrective measures he has brought in Government instead of conniving for his failure for greedy purposes.
The poor performance in last week’s elections by the ANC has reinvigorated international investor confidence in the South African economy – a clear sign that Zuma’s policies had led to greater unemployment.
The rand, to which the Namibian Dollar is linked, strengthened as the election results trickled in, breaking below the psychological 14 level to the US dollar.
However, Namibia’s economic prospects that have arisen from the outcome of these elections that remain pending in major municipalities such as Tshwane and Johannesburg owing to majority controlling stakes can never be ignored as they place Namibia on the path of economic recovery after a difficult first half of the year.
Notably owing to this vote, investor confidence has improved due to confidence in the democratic process in the SA and this too has trickle down effects on Namibia due to the fact that Namibia imports up to 70 percent of its retail merchandise from down south.
With more positives to draw from these votes for Namibia economically, it is true that the crucial decider will be whether SA is downgraded at the end of the year. The Feds next interest rate decision would also impact the Rand should the Fed hike; expectations are that the Rand would weaken against the major currencies ending Namibia’s green moment. Understandably, the pronounced drop in support for South Africa’s ruling party increases the risk of more populist government policies but be as it may Namibia sits in the gallery and stands to benefit in the interim.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015