We have hit rock bottom

2017-06-14 06:02

WE have hit rock bottom. Officially, we have sunk into a recession. We have been hit by a double whammy: junk status and a recession.

For years we struggled to keep the limping economy above water but each time we tried it sank deeper into the depths of despair. We have had a recession before but we managed to get out of it and survive. This time it’s likely to be severe — we have been reduced to junk status, our economy is stagnant and unemployment stands at 7 million, an all-time high.

Who would want to invest and lend money to an unproductive nation that has sunk into the morass of despair?

It will be a long, hard slog to recovery.

But new Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba is not overly concerned. He feels he is the right man to pull the country out of recession.

He thinks rescuing a nation from the clutches of recession is child’s play, even one that is so badly diseased and plagued by a voracious army of greedy, corrupt and incompetent politicians and public servants.

But even if Gigaba is sincere and competent enough to guide us out of this recession, he has to contend with a leader and a party that regard the economic problems a mere side show to the main show dominating the political arena: Zuma’s court battles and the ANC’s election campaign. They come first, not the country. 0-The NEC has already laid down its marker. Its MPs will follow meekly.

If Gigaba can bat out this fierce onslaught on the economy, it would be a feather in his cap.

T. MARKANDAN

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