News24

Zuma says pay gap talk is a farce

2012-11-01 17:13

Cape Town - Notions that the gap between the rich and poor in South Africa is widening is a farce, President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday.

Speaking at the official opening of the National House of Traditional Leaders in Parliament, Zuma inferred that the income gap was a lie which had been repeated several times in the past 18 years.

"We've almost come to believe it is true that ever since 1994 the gap has been widening... it's not scientifically correct," he said.

In an apparent attack on academics and economists, Zuma said comments on the growing gap between the classes was "spin" meant to unfairly criticise the government.

He said there was no measurement of the wealth gap before 1994, as only white people were counted in the census.

"We [black people] were pushed into the homelands.... We were not counted and we didn't even know how much we are," said Zuma.

He said it was only after the democratic dispensation that all citizens were allowed to move from the rural homelands into cities for work opportunities, leading to massive urbanisation.

This led to its own set of problems, as there had been insufficient infrastructure in cities to accommodate the influx, leading to the mushrooming of informal settlements.

"It's a problem of success.... We succeeded in telling citizens they can go wherever they want in the country."

Zuma insisted that the gap between rich and poor had in fact narrowed.

Comparing the pre-1994 period with today, Zuma said that in the past black people had not been allowed to participate in the mainstream economy, whereas in post-apartheid South Africa there were many black-owned businesses listed on the stock exchange.

"In fact, poverty was worse [before 1994] than it is now.... People are getting grants which they didn't get before.... If that isn't closing the gap what is?"

Zuma said the government was on track to change the quality of life of South Africans.

"People who are writing in the newspapers are educated people and we think they are writing the truth.... It's propaganda which is dangerous," he said.

Speaking on a Cabinet decision made last week to freeze the salaries of the executive for the next year, Zuma said it was a symbolic gesture to "indicate the need to close the gap".

Comments
  • amandla.whereto - 2012-11-01 17:17

    Yip, too true, there were plenty of Zulu's with R 250 million huts in Nkandla pre-1994!

      colin.dovey - 2012-11-01 18:27

      Has anybody noticed? - Malema was giving us all the laughs, and now Zuma has taken over....what a circus!

      andrez.kolesky - 2012-11-01 18:28

      I can think of quite a few other "gaps" that should be closed, starting in your own harem.

      amandla.whereto - 2012-11-01 18:31

      Well Loo-vu, perhaps you should find a black corporate ladder to climb, or maybe you should start your own business, that way you don't need whites, you don't even need to blame them for anything, try it!

      lsfreak - 2012-11-01 20:11

      He's right you know, We must look @ it from he's point of view... You take a house, any house, make a few improvements costing lets say R250mil (paid for by others) then you see because you can no longer see the neighbours shack and he's kids walking barefoot that means they aren't. Come on people this guys right "If you don't see it, then it doesn't exist" :D

      gert.swart.393 - 2012-11-01 20:48

      @luvo.luvos - The white people of this have worked their asses off to make this country work the past 20 years, but the "black Diamonds" have done their best to ruin the country with their greed and corruption. And the biggest losers are the poor black masses.

      art5SA - 2012-11-02 05:37

      7 years ago... Shabier Sheik was tossing you "Chicken Fodder".... something like R500k a year.... for "FAVOURS"... Today, you have just spent R69m on an Nkandla 'upgrade'... and another R250m for "SECURITY"... WTF are you on about? Please bow out of politics.... your LACK OF EDUCATION is showing!!!!!!

      johny.stront - 2012-11-02 10:06

      Lets Blame Apartheid!! Did Apartheid., - Cause SA's current trade deficit..? - Cause the current flight of investment capital from SA..? - Cause the out of control population growth..? - Cause the false CPIX current presented by STATS-SA (probably half of the de facto rate)..? - Make the current government so corrupt..? - Build Nkandla..? - Invent e-Toll..? - Destroy SAA, Telkom, the SABC, etc. - Have the worst economic growth rate in Africa..? - Destroy the infrastructure..? - Produce the current Illiterate Graduates..? - Eat up the text-books..? - Or caused Hurricane Sally..?

      customdesign - 2012-11-02 10:53

      I actually agree with him- as emotionally charged as this topic is- I really think it is an improvement since 1994- even our chars have a minimum wage now which is great- people forget how abused people were under apartheid.

  • lsfreak - 2012-11-01 17:19

    "We [black people] were pushed into the homelands.... We were not counted and we didn't even know how much we are," said Zuma. Had to read this twice... Cause this is from a person that is leading us, Yet he says that well educated people are all wrong. May the All Mighty Help us all :/

      alf.pop - 2012-11-01 17:27

      Who stole the family brain cell, Zipper? Were the president, deputy and ministers excluded fromn the census, as they do only affect the economy of the country negatively? The Nkandla syndrome kicking in again? Bloody crooks the lot of them!

      mikel.kiparski - 2012-11-02 07:57

      what was it 2million whites 4million blacks when this took place,,,,,NOW 5MIL/50MIL=10 TO 1 FROM 2 TO 1.....WHO IS AT FAULT HERE??????

      taig.solomon - 2012-11-02 08:41

      The gap between the educated and the uneducated is widening, with the population skyrocketing and the education system failing. If you have no education your chances of being employed and earning above minimum wage is extremely low. Government needs to educate the masses to empower them. Unfortunately most educated people don't vote for the failing ANC so its in their best interests not to do so.

  • louis.hager.12 - 2012-11-01 17:20

    And in other news the gap in Angie Motshekga's teeth is also not widening, though the gap between Zuma and reality has increased to the n'th degree.

  • Eterni80 - 2012-11-01 17:20

    says the man living in the most expensive house on the African continent.

  • rbphiri - 2012-11-01 17:22

    "Notions that the gap between the rich and poor in South Africa is widening is a farce". Oh really MR president! gap is an understatement...We world's apart! How can my 3 bedroom even begin to compare with your mammoth mansion in Nklanda.

      tebogo.maja.77 - 2012-11-01 21:54

      I have come to realize that the ANC members especially the most corrupt are out of touch with reality. Getting a grant at 250 rands per month does not close the gap between the wealthy and the poor. We need to educate and improve the lives of the poor beyond just giving out grants. However Dr. Zuma knows more than the real educated doctors, hhhm. Maybe its me but the majority of south africans cannot afford houses, ever-increasing electricity tarrifs, lets not even talk about schools for the average south african. Did text books eventually make it to the Limpopo schools?. Yeah i guess he is right, the ANC has closed the gap by screwing the average south african.

  • JamesMWood - 2012-11-01 17:22

    He should tell that to the poor and see how they feel about his economic assessment or is it from Mr Mac maharaj?

  • jlushaba - 2012-11-01 17:23

    Kwaaaaaaa wagagagagagga hahahahaaha. Zuma has just made my day. He's really a joke

  • khethu.ndlovu.3 - 2012-11-01 17:26

    Who ever is advising the 'innocent' man needs to be demoted to something that will require him/her to tourch sh¢t with their bare hands.

  • John - 2012-11-01 17:26

    Rich is when your MONEY works for you. Middle class is when you WORK for your MONEY. POOR is when you do not work. The gap IS widening dear ANC president!!!

      matli.mokoena - 2012-11-01 17:31

      if only it was that simple... go educate yourself about why we actually have this wide gap between the haves and the have nots

      parys.fotograaf - 2012-11-01 18:03

      matli, read a book: the Bell Curve to find out about this. I am sure you will hate it, facts and all aside. The effects of inequality cannot be significantly reduced, let alone quelled, unless the government embarks on a compulsory redistribution of wealth that raises taxes astronomically and strictly controls personal enterprise. Some will call this social justice. Others will call it tyranny. I side with the latter, but whichever position one takes, it is time to stop pretending that, without such massive compulsion, human beings in a fair and prosperous society will ever be much more equal than they are now. From the Sunday Times, UK, May 25 1997. A longer version of this article appears in the summer issue of The Public Interest. Dr. Murray is a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (1150 17th Street NW, Washington, DC, 20036)

      silentcoder - 2012-11-01 18:54

      Parys - that's odd, because the Rhineland capitalisms, Canada, Japan and several other nations have managed to come out of times of extreme poverty to build societies that very egalitarian with a much more fair and equitable wealth redistribution than ours - and none of them could be called Tyrannies, in fact their citizens are significantly MORE free - both in enterprise and in social matters - than we are.

  • mpho.galane1 - 2012-11-01 17:26

    I think that big head of u Mr President is not rite. U just read stats on Tuesday n it said that blacks earn 60k n whites 360k. Pls tell us that not a gap...

      John - 2012-11-01 17:49

      Where do you suck your data from ? People that work for a salary are not RICH!! Rich is when your MONEY works for you!!

      parys.fotograaf - 2012-11-01 18:04

      There is no issue about the existence of the gap. Gaps have always existed and always will, that is reality. Closing the gap..well read this: The effects of inequality cannot be significantly reduced, let alone quelled, unless the government embarks on a compulsory redistribution of wealth that raises taxes astronomically and strictly controls personal enterprise. Some will call this social justice. Others will call it tyranny. I side with the latter, but whichever position one takes, it is time to stop pretending that, without such massive compulsion, human beings in a fair and prosperous society will ever be much more equal than they are now. From the Sunday Times, UK, May 25 1997. A longer version of this article appears in the summer issue of The Public Interest. Dr. Murray is a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (1150 17th Street NW, Washington, DC, 20036)

      narike.lintvelt.9 - 2012-11-01 20:20

      I'm white and I'd LOVE to be in an average white household that pulls 365 000K a year. Failing that, I'd love to just know of ONE such household in my (white) middle-class neighbourhood.

      Jaybeebaby - 2012-11-02 05:50

      It's a question of averages. Take the money earned collectively and divide it by the numbers of economically active black people - do not add in the 25.5% unemployed. I think one would see a very different picture then.

  • jlushaba - 2012-11-01 17:27

    Wait wo wo comrade... just a few weeks ago, Zuma was considering salary freeze across high earners, complaining about the gap between poor and rich. Now this!

      colin.dovey - 2012-11-01 18:24

      Yup - you are correct - Zuma is contradicting himself - he has not got a CLUE!

      tw2066 - 2012-11-01 20:26

      JA - that was last weeks lies. This weeks lies are different.

      mikel.kiparski - 2012-11-02 08:01

      THIS IS HOW U TALK TO THOSE WHO NEVER HAD SCHOOL BOOKS 2 READ

  • mholthuysen - 2012-11-01 17:29

    Does he actually believe what he is saying? His Kraal in Nkandla with a bunker once again comes to mind....

  • Muffin_man_can - 2012-11-01 17:30

    Denial - the only thing zuma is really good at..

      Michael - 2012-11-01 19:09

      if only he was in de-nile playing wit de crocs

  • sminx.r.mandla - 2012-11-01 17:33

    With unemployment rates increasing to 25.5% from 24.9%, what's this fool saying? Ofcourse government has failed its people and to top it they endure seeing u and goons plander more money whereas it should be going to building this economy!! Zuma go back to school and study Economics...

      siphokamntimande.ngwenya - 2012-11-01 17:44

      U a just confused plse read the statement again nd comment

      sminx.r.mandla - 2012-11-01 19:28

      I wouldn't expect a twat like u to understand economics, maybe u should take your own advice there!!

      louis.vandermerwe.351 - 2012-11-01 23:43

      The real reason unemployment is rising is that each year we add a massive number of newly matriculated young people to the list of people who cannot find immediate employment. Economics as taught in universities just created another bunch of "Experts" who without fail cannot agree on a policy that works, open your eyes, not your mouth. America, Europe, and the whole "First world are proof that "economics" as taught is only a recipe for failure, common sense and day by day cash flow management based on doing what is needed, and not what "should" be done, tempered by a grand plan A La Manuel , will work and at least feed everyone.

      Jaybeebaby - 2012-11-02 05:54

      Economics 101, you mean.

  • TheunisNaude - 2012-11-01 17:35

    So Mr. President - without Grade 12 - your word is better than scholar or economists. I think its you that's spreading propaganda with your half-truths!! This article demonstrates again, that our government will own up to nothing!!

  • khethu.ndlovu.3 - 2012-11-01 17:36

    And the man is buzy closing it further with his inkandla palace.

  • piero.mendace.5 - 2012-11-01 17:36

    Really Dino, I wonder whet things have in fact improved and for whom.. With our never ending inflation, our low productivity and our rediculous aspirations in terms of pay for that unproductive labour where are things better. All that will happen is that these striking workers will soon be fired to raise the standard of living of a few. Sorry forgot, the unions have gotten richer exploiting exactly the people they were created to import. Brilliant!

      Jaybeebaby - 2012-11-02 05:55

      and the newly enriched mine workers have now widened the unemployment gap.

  • rouen.heiberg - 2012-11-01 17:37

    Let's see.....who do we listen to?.....a corrupt unschooled idiot or the head economists for some of SA's largest institutions?

  • piero.mendace.5 - 2012-11-01 17:38

    Solutions, get rid of unions, employ people other than their relatives and watch things improve naturally as they should.

  • piero.mendace.5 - 2012-11-01 17:40

    Oh, forgot was Government in their wisdom not elected to bring the solutions?!

  • tmasipa1 - 2012-11-01 17:41

    i warned u guys not to let this man speak in public!!

  • deon.meiring - 2012-11-01 17:43

    It is so funny to read all of this!

  • eduard.marais.5 - 2012-11-01 17:46

    the saddest thing is that Zuma is probably believing himself; what a load of hogwash

      norman.buchalter - 2012-11-01 19:25

      I don't think he can possibly understand what he attempts to read. In isiZulu,however, it would sound even worse, because he would say it with conviction , and still not understand a word of it

  • asdhasgd - 2012-11-01 17:47

    OH...my god. i actually cant beleive this guy is the president ._.

  • impi.masondo - 2012-11-01 17:47

    they must redistirbute the money because it belong to all of us

      rouen.heiberg - 2012-11-01 18:04

      What money? Mine doesbt belong to you,

      andile.vabasa - 2012-11-01 19:21

      I really wish I could steal back my tax that I pay every month. I need it so much and the government blows it left right and center like it's nothing. Instead of using it to fix to road etc now we gotta pay that as well with toll fees. Plus you gotta pay like 300% higher electricity for the poor. Has anyone actually worked out what tax is.. Taking VAT/Income tax etc... What the hell do they do with all that money. This country is being screwed properly!

      madmountain - 2012-11-01 21:01

      Great idea impi, but you're a little late - SARS already takes the money and redistributes it. If you're not getting your share, please contact SARS. Anyway, have a nice day

      Jaybeebaby - 2012-11-02 05:58

      I'll take my share, thanks

  • miki.brits - 2012-11-01 17:47

    Does that include your salary Mr. Zuma and that of all your sidekicks, not to mention all you starving wives and children (how many do you have now??) You have failed to mention all the illegals we have in this country (I think the figure now stands on 15 Million. Do something about these illegals and you will have sorted the informal settlements out 'ONE TIME'!!! As for where they can live? How about ZUMAVILLE!! The only person who earns 'less' then me are the car guards in my area and I always give them something before I leave.... unlike ALL the black folks in their 'fancy' cars that park there!! I think we all know what you are doing here.... You are starting to campaign for the next election?? You are going to shoot yourself in the foot Sir.... have you forgotten that with your stunning brainchild 'BEE' most of the Executives are BLACK PEOPLE??? Actually, you are right.... Go ahead and 'close this gap!!

  • FinalJustice - 2012-11-01 17:50

    Nothing new, it proves my point on these type of statistical analysis; especially when you use the ANC-coefficient: I.e. An infinite desirable constant value with the incredible ability to transform 'Actual results' into 'Suitable results' for the sake of the argument at hand.

  • bcluley - 2012-11-01 17:50

    This oke knows how to win the masses over!tell them what they want to hear.who cares if he talks nonsense,that nonsense wins him votes.democracy does not work in this country

  • singatha.jongihlati - 2012-11-01 17:53

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahaha.....

  • piero.mendace.5 - 2012-11-01 17:54

    Really Impi, did you earn it...

  • teboho.martin.3 - 2012-11-01 17:55

    OMG I can't believe zuma is a president !how can he speak like that! I hope every black man who has cast his vote for this man in this country is regreting the day they were voting for this ediot.

      tsietsi.mshengu - 2012-11-01 18:27

      Tebza, I regret giving my vote to this man everyday, and he aint getting any in the next election.

      andile.vabasa - 2012-11-01 19:27

      Yes the ANC are a bunch of uneducated moron's, how can the uneducated, educate the uneducated it doesn't even make sense. I really don't care who wins the next election as long as it's not the ANC... COPE/DA or whoever will do a better job than these baste reds. Also so sick of this propaganda, apartheid this and white man that and the masses suck it up cause it gives them something to do, that is why no one improves themselves! It is because they are waiting for a handout which is not going to happen! Think about it, in apartheid the white made wealth for themselves and there are so few of them. Who will get what? Try dividing wealth of 4 million between 50 million..... please! We gotta make our own wealth.

      andile.vabasa - 2012-11-01 19:28

      Can I get an AMEN?!

      amandla.whereto - 2012-11-01 19:29

      It is not "he", it is the ANC, they are the nyoka, it does not matter, Zuma vs Motlanthe, same snake different head.

      madmountain - 2012-11-01 21:06

      @andile, Sorry, no amen, but I'm thinking of writing a rap song called "how can the uneducated, educate the uneducated - it doesn't even make sense"

      idille.borchers - 2012-11-01 21:13

      @ Andile - AMEN! If you do not work, you do not eat.

  • singatha.jongihlati - 2012-11-01 17:57

    "It's a problem of success.... We succeeded in telling citizens they can go wherever they want in the country." To the squalor of tin shacks Mr President?Some success.

  • amina.conteh.50 - 2012-11-01 17:57

    Can somebody tell the President when we talk about widening gap we refer to the gap between tenderpreuer and the jobless. These guys acquire so much wealth by inflating government tenders without any hardwork.

  • parys.fotograaf - 2012-11-01 18:00

    The effects of inequality cannot be significantly reduced, let alone quelled, unless the government embarks on a compulsory redistribution of wealth that raises taxes astronomically and strictly controls personal enterprise. Some will call this social justice. Others will call it tyranny. I side with the latter, but whichever position one takes, it is time to stop pretending that, without such massive compulsion, human beings in a fair and prosperous society will ever be much more equal than they are now. From the Sunday Times, UK, May 25 1997. Dr. Murray is a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute (1150 17th Street NW, Washington, DC, 20036)

  • theo.martinez.980 - 2012-11-01 18:02

    These economists and academics have always said that the wealth gap has widened between 1994 and now. Zuma just spins it. not those academics.

  • jaysonpaul.beckwith - 2012-11-01 18:03

    My my my. Have you not been a busy bee, chatter box today Mr Zuma????? Another way to put it is verbal diarrhea.

  • victor.mabule - 2012-11-01 18:05

    Mr Zuma pls explain the mushrooming of the informal settlements and the villages that are so deprived from almost everything majority of SA don't qualify for bonds are u not sick and tired of people fighting for free houses pls Mr Zuma re-think

  • Montagnes.Bleues - 2012-11-01 18:06

    uguh uguh uuuguuuhhhhhhH another tribal hut on the cards eh?

  • tsietsi.mshengu - 2012-11-01 18:07

    Can you close the gap through grants? This man is clueless. This gap should not be seen from a racial perspective. Fact is the gap between the rich and poor, irrespective of race, is widening.

      itse.nnete.1 - 2012-11-01 20:18

      The south african politicians behave like they are royalty,like they are not here to serve us...like they are doing us a favor,having gone to exile entitles them to what ever they want.

  • alaina.robbertse - 2012-11-01 18:08

    Rich Zuma is when you steal from the taxpayer and fillup your own bank account,like you and the whole lot in the government do.You are rich snd the people go hungry.Go take a shower.Seems like you just got out of bed again..Must be hard to be like you.You can't think.Empty brain.

  • sthembiso.jali.50 - 2012-11-01 18:10

    lol. whoever wrights zuma's speech must in a mission 2 sabotage him.does this means the census findings were all rubbish ?

      itse.nnete.1 - 2012-11-01 20:15

      I think zuma has trouble reading his speeches and memorising them must be a hustle,I mean dah,what do we expect from a grade to pupil really.I think he just makes mistakes reading his speech and goes and think what the hell and completely goes off the tangent spewing stuff he knows nothing about.I can gaurantee RSA this much,he isn't stupid.he has reached his goal to enrich himself...\r\nIt was never about the country.

  • maluxionn - 2012-11-01 18:12

    Just when you think you heard it all.Oh my god!I can't believe that this man is the president of RSA.Who elected him to be there?does he understand what he is talking about?Who are his avisors?is it Makhumalo,Blade nzimande or a certain zulu warior?More questions than answers.He must never speak in public again because we get embarassed by him,enough is enough man,whenever given a time to adress issues i think he must just gigle en gigle then it will be much better this.

      idille.borchers - 2012-11-01 21:21

      Blame Vavi and Malema. They were going to die for him.

  • michael.i.wright - 2012-11-01 18:14

    Did I wake up this morning and discover that I no longer understand English, or has this cretin invented a whole new language?

  • truthbetold221 - 2012-11-01 18:27

    Zuma is like Chuck Norris, when he says stats are wrong they are wrong :) When he says you're rich you're rich. I mean he did the unthinkable, he took a shower. Who else can do that, seriously?

      madmountain - 2012-11-01 21:12

      That's not true, right is right and wrong is wrong - In the eyes of the ranger the unsuspecting stranger had better know the truth about right from wrong.

      truthbetold221 - 2012-11-03 15:04

      lol

  • Hasani P - 2012-11-01 18:32

    True mr president, things are improving

      amandla.whereto - 2012-11-01 19:09

      What things, the weather? Sure it is we are coming into summer!

      madmountain - 2012-11-01 21:14

      Hey Hasani, where u gettin' your stash from?

  • mfundo.radebe1 - 2012-11-01 18:34

    When our 'very qualified president who went to University--- NOT' says that academics and economists are wrong. He's even a scientist now and I quote \scientifically\ Oh wow Mr Pres

  • clive.kihn - 2012-11-01 18:35

    Who feeds him this crap, that he spouts without giving a moment's thought? At least Mbeki had enough intelligence to think about what he was saying. Please quit, Jake, and spare us more embarrassment.

      thembalethu.kantoyanto - 2012-11-01 20:01

      The guys has a big empty head, where does he live? Probably not in RSA. No wonder why he's building a mall in rural\r\n remote area like nkandla

  • JohnDough - 2012-11-01 18:36

    ROFL! From the biggest farce of all!

  • vivian.harris.73 - 2012-11-01 18:38

    Tell that to the poor people living like animals in shacks for more than 18yrs.....

  • thembalethu.kantoyanto - 2012-11-01 18:39

    We have a banana president, how cn JZ say tht is he bcoz he earns to same level as white ppl and now everybody earns equal? Come one JZ use ur big head or ur shower 2 cool it down so tht u cn see facts clearly.

      maru.rakker - 2012-11-02 02:08

      White people? I am white and I earn less than what the mine workers are demanding - AND I have a degree and a post graduate diploma.