Jacob Zuma’s moment of truth

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DESPITE Jacob Zuma’s call last week for the restoration of land rights to its rightful owners, a cloud of defiance from South Africa’s white capital continues to hang over that country’s prospects for economic emancipation of the black majority.
Zuma’s African National Congress (ANC) this year goes for a crucial election confronted by an increasingly restless and understandably agitated electorate over its failure to implement economic programmes designed to uplift the masses.
While Zimbabwe has already implemented the Land Reform Programme and now the Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Programme, economic emancipation remains a pipe-dream for many South Africans despite growing calls for speedy implementation of the indigenisation of the land and the economy.
Yet the white capital which still holds the aces in South Africa has systematically sought to stop any programme or policy aimed at restoring ownership of land to the majority.
“We are very happy that this claim has been concluded and that land is being handed over today,” said Zuma at the official hand over of land which comprises the Mala Mala Game Reserve to members of the N’wandlamhlarhi Community Property Association in Mpumalanga last Thursday.
“The restoration of land to rightful owners is one of the biggest responsibilities you gave the democratic government.
“We have made a lot of progress, but work still continues.”
While the handover is seen as a major step by the ANC, not many are convinced by the gesture as statistics prove otherwise.
According to a report by Reuters in 2012, South Africa’s black majority directly owns less than 10 percent of the Johannesburg Stork Market.
“In 2006, 70 percent of South Africa’s land was still owned by whites,” reads a Wikipedia report in part.
“This is despite the promises of the ANC to redistribute 30 percent of the land from whites to blacks.
“Whites hold much of South Africa’s land, secured through freehold type regimes.
“More than one-third of the population occupies 13 percent of the land, often in insecure or secondary ways.”
Despite these tear-jerking statistics, the white capital in its typical arrogant fashion last week released a report which claimed that South Africa tops the prosperity list with per capita wealth of US$11 310 last year.
In contrast, the report released by a so-called ‘consultancy’ based in the United Kingdom with offices in South Africa — New World Wealth, claimed that Zimbabweans are among the poorest people in Africa.
The ongoing indigenisation programme and laws, New World Wealth report claimed, are expected to make Zimbabweans even poorer!
The message emanating from this report is clear for South Africans, particularly the ruling ANC, that they should not implement the land reform and resettlement and indigenisation and economic empowerment programmes if they are to remain ‘rich’.
How are people who do not own any resources in their country said to be ‘happy’ and ‘rich?
How do millions of new tobacco farmers who now drive pick- up trucks be said to be poor?
How about the gold panners who had grown accustomed to playing hide and seek with police be said to be poor when the government has regularised their operations?
Those entrepreneurs now plying their trade as proud owners of the companies they got from government.
It is tragic that there are those especially in the MDC-T who believe that they are poor when they own the land and resources.
There are those who have fallen for the white capital’s dirty tricks that they do not believe we can do it on our own as prescribed by the Zimbabwe Agenda for Sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation (Zim ASSET).
“There’s no system that has worked successfully for Africans, except the Zimbabwean system,” said opposition Economic Freedom Fighters leader, Julius Malema in an apparent response to New World Wealth’s report.
“Zimbabweans can today be poor, but at least they own property.
“You are eating pap and vleis here in South Africa, but you have nothing to show as proof that you belong to South Africa.”
Malema, stressed that whites, who have stalled the implementation of land reform in South Africa should not be compensated for the land they will lose.
“The 20 years of not taking the land should have been regarded as compensation because the land should have been taken in 1994,” he said.
“So we have compensated them (white people) enough.”
The scare tactics by whites that South Africa should not implement these programmes if they are to go what they say is the Zimbabwe route will intensify in the coming weeks.
Zimbabwe which fell victim to white capital’s dirty tactics through the regime change agenda should provide inspiration to the whole of Africa.
Let those with ears listen.

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