Finance minister must stick to the truth Finance minister must stick to the truth

2016-02-03 06:00

RECENTLY, the Minister of Finance, Pravin Gordhan, was questioned on why the rand took a knock “every time the president opens his mouth”. His response was: “The rand doesn’t operate on what an individual does or says.”

I am astonished he fails to realise that the individual in question is the president and the executive power of the country is vested in him as leader of our democracy. It therefore goes without saying that his words or deeds will definitely impact either negatively or positively on the economy.

Yes, the global economy is taking strain following the slowdown in growth in the Chinese economy, but we need not drag our economy further down the hill by foolish utterances and improper actions.

The axing of Nhlanhla Nene as finance minster, the appointment of rookie and unknown minister David van Rooyen, then his removal and the reappointment of former minister Gordhan, is enough to send jitters through the economy and send investors scampering for safety.

This is just one of the many reasons why the rand has plunged to such low levels. Investor confidence in our currency has been shattered and Gordhan has now said that “additional initiatives are being taken to attract investment”.

What is the point in scaring off investors and then trying to woo them back? What a waste of time and energy.

Gordhan, please stick to the truth if you want to retain your credibility and continue to be held in high regard by many. Don’t protect your boss, who has blundered big time. He is an individual, but has significant power and influence to pull the entire economy down.

You can fool some people some time, but you can’t fool all the people all the time.


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