‘Minister doesn’t report to youth’

2011-02-09 08:50

Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu did not need to report back to the ANC Youth League about her position against the nationalisation of mines, her spokesperson said in a radio interview today.

“The minister doesn’t actually have to report back to the youth league. All she should do is to talk about the policy of government that she represents, and she was representing yesterday,” Musa Zondi said in an interview with SAfm.

Shabangu said at a mining conference in Cape Town yesterday that she was still opposed to the nationalisation of mines.

This is despite the ruling African National Congress researching the issue following demands from the ANC Youth League.

Asked whether her statement did not show that she was at loggerheads with the ruling party, Zondi replied: “I’m not so sure if by implication it means loggerheads.”

He said the ANC was merely doing “proper research” on the matter before it came to any conclusion.

“It is not being investigated by government – it is being investigated by the ruling party, which is a separate thing altogether. But government’s position still remains the same – nationalisation is not a policy,” said Zondi.

ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema is pushing for nationalisation, and after initial resistance, the ANC last year agreed to research the matter.

Shabangu said at the 2010 mining conference that there would be no nationalisation “in my lifetime”.

ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe said yesterday the research into the viability of nationalising the country’s mines would be done “thoroughly”.

“We are not going blindly on this one,” he told journalists in Johannesburg.

Anglo American chief executive Cynthia Carroll told the mining conference: “Mining companies simply will not invest if they cannot be assured that the assets they create will be secure.

“In ignoring this truth the false prophets who argue for nationalisation are advocating the road to ruin, a path we must not follow,” Agence France Presse quoted her saying.

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