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Khaya Sithole | The SAA bailout and the demise of Tito Mboweni's credibility

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Khaya Sithole (Supplied)
Khaya Sithole (Supplied)

Back in July 1998, Tito Titus Mboweni made the managed transition from full-time politician to full-time bureaucrat when he moved to the South African Reserve Bank.

Initially appointed as an advisor to the governor, Mboweni was elevated to governor of the bank himself a year later. This transition – from the politician, defending the sanctity of labour relations, to the pragmatic hawk overseeing the country's monetary policy citadel, would have come with steep learnings for Mboweni.

The fact that he remained in the governor's seat for so long indicates that he eventually mastered the transition. Twenty years on, Mboweni was forced into another when he was appointed Minister of Finance, following Nhlanhla Nene's belated recollection of his dalliances with the Saxonwold crew. This new post involved overseeing fiscal policy and managing the expectations of many ministers whose common defining trait is the belief that their department is more crucial than any other.

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