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Small towns are collapsing across South Africa

How it’s starting to affect farming …
Tulbagh, Western Cape, South Africa, Cattle grazing in a farm at Tulbagh in on wheat field in the Swartland region of the Western Cape, South Africa. Image: Peter Titmuss/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Farming and agribusiness play a crucial role in sustaining the economies of small towns and rural areas. There is a lot of evidence of this in the economic literature and in the popular media. This dependency has its inherent risks.

International literature tends to focus on the devastation of small towns in times of drought or when farming lobby groups argue for particular policies. In South Africa, a different pattern has emerged. This is when municipalities fail to provide basic services to their communities and businesses. These services include water and sanitation, electricity, roads and technological infrastructure.

Read: What separates the winners from the losers among municipalities

South Africa has a three-tier system of governance. National government sets national economic development policy and drives the search for investment by both domestic and international investors. Provincial government plays a big role too in searching for investment and executing government’s policies and programmes. The most successful province has been the Western Cape, which has achieved the status of the country’s technology hub. But where the investors are located within a province depends on municipalities, specifically how well run they are.

South African municipalities are in deep trouble. For many years households and residents have felt the impact. They have resorted increasingly to mounting protests across the country. But lately, there is growing evidence that governance and service delivery failures are also directly affecting the functioning and efficiencies of farming and agribusinesses in small towns.

A case in point is the recent decision by the food and beverages group Clover to move its cheese production from Lichtenburg, a town in the North West province of South Africa, to an existing plant outside Durban in KwaZulu-Natal due to “ongoing poor service delivery”.

Lichtenburg is part of the country’s maize producing triangle. Three provinces – Free State, Mpumalanga, North West – account for 84% of the country’s maize production, according to latest estimates of the 2020/21 season.

State of collapse

South Africa’s finance minister, Tito Mboweni, recently painted a gloomy picture of the state of municipalities in the country. There are about 278 municipalities in South Africa. Mboweni said that 163 municipalities were in financial distress, 40 were battling to deliver basic services, and 102 had adopted budgets for 2021/22 that they cannot fund.

A growing number are also failing to collect revenue from residents and businesses for electricity, water and property taxes.

Mboweni added: And, for the first time in our democracy, the national executive has been ordered by a high court to constitutionally intervene in the affairs of a municipality owing to
a financial and service delivery failure.

Municipalities in rural areas and small towns are worst off. A recent study by the Tshwane University of Technology researchers stated that the level of service delivery in rural communities is less compared to urban areas, and there is no sign of improvement.

Consequences

The multiplier effects of Clover’s decision to relocate are likely to be large. The closure of the firm in such a small town is likely to have a number of negative spillover effects across the local economy.

The company, according to official statements from the government, provided 380 permanent jobs and 40 temporary jobs. It also employs 20 general workers and 20 truck drivers and cleaners.

In addition, the plant gave farmers market access for their produce, and a range of businesses bought and sold products from the company. The income from these activities would have supported many other businesses in the community.

Clover is not the first major company to decry poor municipal services. There’s the long running case of Astral Foods, a poultry producer that also supplies animal feed, and the Lekwa Municipality. Astral has lost millions of rands in production because of failures by the municipality in the Mpumalanga province to provide its poultry plant with water and electricity.

Read: Astral secures high court order against government in service delivery battle

These two cases illustrate how efficiency and economic sustainability of agribusinesses depend on delivery of basic services. Without them, levels of investment in the businesses will shrink in such towns. Importantly, this may affect the sustainability of agribusinesses as some might incur more costs as they try themselves to provide the services that were supposed to be provided by local governments.

The farmers face a similar challenge, directly and indirectly. The agribusiness provides a range of solutions and market access to local farmers. If agribusinesses’ sustainability is threatened, farmers suffer too. More directly, poor roads, unreliable electricity supply and water supply directly affect the profitability and sustainability of farming operations.

Importantly, these are all entities that provide job opportunities to the least skilled South Africans and indirectly sustain the communities around small towns.

The way forward

President Cyril Ramaphosa set out an economic reform and recovery agenda for the country in October 2020. In it he identified agriculture and agro-processing (food security) as one of the drivers of economic growth and job creation, especially in small towns.

But a vibrant agriculture and agribusiness won’t develop if poor service delivery by municipalities continues.

There are some basic practical interventions the government could make. These include ensuring that a municipality has competent management, financial officers, civil and electrical engineers, as well as competent political leadership.

The Financial and Fiscal Commission, an independent constitutional advisory body on financial fiscal matters in the country, recently argued municipalities should look closely at their wage bills. This would ensure that salaries didn’t crowd out money for critical service delivery functions. These include waste removal, waste management, sewerage systems, roads and water provision.

These improvements need to happen simultaneously and not before or after agriculture revitalisation, which is supported by the government’s Agricultural and Agro-processing Master Plans. These seek to expand and grow South Africa’s agriculture and agro-processing.

But a healthy farming sector rests on towns that are functional and that have the basics in place.

This is a challenge that the South African government should face head-on.The Conversation

Wandile Sihlobo, Visiting Research Fellow, Wits School of Governance, University of the Witwatersrand

This article is republished from The Conversation under a Creative Commons licence. Read the original article.

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This should not be surprising to anyone that has been following the Zondo commission. Deploying cadres to positions that they are not fit to hold, and creating posts for people just to receive a salary is destroying the budgets and infrastructure of small towns.

This will not be solved by the current employees.

It’s time for the ANC and its supporters for face hard facts.

The ANC is unable to govern anything.

They have made their own towns and cities “ungovernable”

If they want to learn how to then they are going to have to come and look at how the DA runs cities and towns in the Western Cape.

Not that the DA are perfect but they at least are not a gang of corrupt, looting destroyers.

Small DA towns in the Western Cape are doing quite fine thank you very much!

The democratic dispensation that allows collectivists without a title deed to determine spending policies at the local government level ensures that a municipality is a vehicle that transforms the infrastructure to reflect the communalist mindset.

No amount of lobbying and burning of tires and schools can prevent the communalist voter from expressing his mindset through the elected municipal managers. The supporters of the DA happen to own title deeds. They have skin in the game. They protect and build their assets through their choices at the ballot.

Now, this is where it gets serious. The socialist and communalist mindset does not respect property rights, but they cling to those who do. Collectivists gravitate towards title deeds and they flock en masse to successful municipalities that provide services and where there is water in the taps. The successes of the DA will cause the downfall of the DA. The ANC supporters will swamp DA municipalities where they will turn those successful municipalities into failures as they form the majority to select the municipal managers.

We have two alternatives to prevent the total collapse of all municipalities that will equalize infrastructure and service delivery with the traditional homelands. Either privatize all municipal services or restrict the right to vote to those who own property. Both come down to the same issue – the selection of voters according to their ability to add value.

Collectivism equalizes everything with the lowest common denominator. This is the nature of the beast.

Another idea I like is the idea of a restriction on voting in local elections after moving to a new province.. Maybe a 5 year cool-off period? Leave the failed policies behind and ensure you don’t change the policies of the place you chose to flee to

There is another issue, of course, that is politically incorrect to mention but what the heck.

Children are not allowed to vote in any democracy, for the reason that they are deemed to be unaccountable, inexperienced, and of immature intellectual capacity. Now please tell me, if this is true, then why do communalists whose fundamental life view is one of unaccountability, who have no economic insight whatsoever, and whose experience of management principles is non-existent, whose average IQ is below the cutoff level for the USA armed forces, have the right to determine the quality of life for the more intelligent and accountable part of the population? In what sphere of nature does the dumbest group in society rule over the competent group? Only in the human race. This is another reason why China is not a democracy. They have experienced under Mao what happens when you allow stupid people to determine policy.

This is not only impractical, but totally pointless.

How can you prove someone was it wasn’t in a province / area for a period of time?
What if someone owns 2 houses. Etc.

Restricting voting rights to people that own property will not have the intended results and may exclude people from voting due to unfortunate circumstances. For example, a couple is going through a divorce and the property needs to be sold to divide the assets. Are these persons no longer entitled to vote? There are many other instances that will make this arbitrary restriction impractical like people in the process of a property purchase, financial difficulties due to retrenchment, a property tied up in an estate and given more time I believe there are many more legitimate reasons a person may not be a property owner at any given point.

We all travel through small towns, all the time. We just did a ”road-trip” – Gauteng – Cape Town and back. Only the Western Cape Town’s resembled something of the past – to me, it was sad to enter most towns and witness the total decay and derelict that engulfed most of these towns, post-apartheid.

What happened to all the banks, schools, hotels, service centres, fish and chips shops, cafes, churches, petrol stations, hardware stores, diaries, butchers, chemists, grocery stores etc.

I have by now made up my mind – if you enter any town, and the ”signage boards”(even Coco-Cola) hanging outside the shops, are ”hand-painted”, don’t bother to stop…
The only champions of the old-guard left seem to be PEP Stores….we went through Willamore (Saartjie Baartman District!) and couldn’t believe how many corner shops were converted and listed as ”bottle-stores”
I believe this is not just about ”service delivery” – which is very bad. What happened to all the private shop owners and entrepreneurs in most of these rural towns? The only thing that grew astronomically is the informal settlements on the outskirts of most of these towns.
I agree with Tito’s gloomy evaluations of these towns which begs the question – how long will the farmers be able to farm and prosper under these conditions – their support base has been destroyed!

When the “Boere Jode” move out, the Somalis move in. These highly respected and much loved Jewish families were the retailers, hoteliers, and financiers across small towns in the Westen Cape and the Karoo. They are the entrepreneurs who follow economic opportunities. They are the “weather vane” of economic growth. They are the leading indicators for social stability. When the Jews leave town, the economy only goes downhill from there.

This brings us to the next point – The Oppenheimer family(along with many English and Afrikaans families) has largely divested from South Africa.

Family of mine owns a couple of guest houses in Dullstroom. They took a very big risk to set these up – pre the Fauci-Sneeze, at great cost to them.
Dullies is on the tourist route etc to the Game Reserve. Business came to a dead standstill when the International tourist were kept away. Fortunately, Local tourists are currently filling up all the vacancies available. Why ? simply because Dullstroom wasn’t allowed to deteriorate like Belfast (a mere 30 km away), and also on the ”tourist route”.
We all know what happened in Pelgrimsrust – politics f*cked that one up! Clarens is another town where business refused to budge to moral and physical decay.

100% correct, Sensei. If you want to know what is happening anywhere in the world, watch what the Jews are doing. They have acute antennae on this issue. No question. And they have all left Mzansi for LA and Haifa. Done and dusted.

Hey @comme ci comme ca – don’t be too sure on clarens…

Was there not too long ago, and it isn’t looking quite as good as it used to!

I think you probably answered your own question, the truth is the exponential growth of informal settlements outside of most of these small towns, where almost all of the community is unemployed, or barely making aliving through casual labour, there is simply insufficient revenue coming in to maintain the towns infrastructure and commerce.
Small industry and businesses lose their regular client base and small shops, not in the basic essential food or alcohol business simply close down or move away taking with them, financial generation and employment.
Eventually, as you now see, the town spirals downward into poverty and disgrace.
Municipalities also find this a challenge, some informal settlements are massive and require service’s Municipalities are simply unable to provide as business closes or moves away and tax income and employment decreases.
It’s a sad downward spiral, and unfortunately until the economy can grow and people can find employment I don’t see it changing.

It is a downward spiral indeed. A negative feedback loop actually. The economy can only grow under the enabling free market policies that allows and rewards entreperneurs for risking their capital. The socialsit ANC policies prevent growth and canabalizes existing capital investments through BEE legislation and redistributive municipal rates and taxes.

This is a recipe for economic decay and social unrest. The implosion of infrastructure across the country eminates straight from Luthuli House. This is why the situation merely reflects the mindset of the voter. We cannot blame the economy because the voters created the economy.

Why is the outcome of ANC governance being soft-soaped with euphemisms?

These municipalities are not “in financial distress”, they have been looted into bankruptcy by ruling party corruption and incompetence.

Sadly, Wandile won’t be biting the hand that feeds anytime soon.

The hand is going to run out of money to feed Wandile then the biting will start

Well said Rob.
Pity my post was deemed too accurate to be published on this website.

You must have laid it on thick, I thought my post may not be published.

And there I was thinking I was the only one targeted by Joseph Goebbels at moneyweb

Fascinating yes these lengthy PC regurgitating pat-on-the-back write-ups..similarly by econ-pseudo scientists..

“strongly-condemning” corruption and incompetence.. Hahhaha

No mention BEE, never mind real world action

People have no idea of the destruction that has been perpetrated on this country and the destruction that is coming! All this supposedly for the advancement of the people!! The sad thing is that only those with good skills and access to resources will be able to cope.

Agree, plenty left to destroy and so it will be ending at last with lives.

“There are some basic practical interventions the government could make. These include ensuring that a municipality has competent management, financial officers, civil and electrical engineers, as well as competent political leadership.”

Not asking for much, hey. The ANC hasn’t got this right in 27 years.

Birth control clinics…..

And this will all be solved shortly with the new arrival of the Cuban Doctors, Engineers, Vets, IT specialists, and so on.
In fact we might as well annex Cuba and bring their entire population as they seem to solve all our woes – using tax payers money!!

And on that note I often wonder if this fascination with Cuba is more of a money laundering project of the ANC. The average salary for these Engineers is say $50k pa and we pay $500k per person. Who checks where the balance is going?????
Food for thought neh!

Have you cleared this article with Roelof Botha yet? Earlier this week he said SA has a “brilliant future”.
What is it to be? I am a little confused….

You’re not alone. I think though that Botha has no choice but to continue the lying his late father perpetrated. Pied Piper’s of note them Bothas

Ofcourse he is Piks son.

Sad truth is that these small towns were vibrant under Apartheid.

They ran darn well! Queenstown even had fountains and was known for growing roses, now it grows plastic rubbish and dust.

Stutterheim has pigs roaming the main road! Potholes galore – Lydenburg springs to mind and the whole of EC in general.

WC got things right by keeping out the destroyers

You so right, my home town ran with a mayor a town clerk and a hand full of people, including a water engineer and an electrician.

Now over 200 incompetent fools are employed. They sometimes sell office furniture on a friday to pay casual staff.

History will never repeat that little nugget. Joseph Goebbels is making sure of that

You should see the destruction of Knysna that the ANC allowed with the building of monstrosity of a mall smack in the middle of the town.

I have said many times here, that the rural areas are no longer the quite little backwaters where people would like to retire/spend time/relax, what ever. They are now uninhabitable.

My home town of Molteno is a prime example. My son is now a third generation farmer there. He and his family now have to travel for schools, hospitals, doctors, chemist, banks, groceries, even to renew a Licence. There may be a church service once a month. You cannot catch a train here. Farmers pay more for transport as the transporters that were here have moved to bigger towns or closed down. Telkom no longer works in the rural areas. One garage, one mechanic.

There used to be two nice country hotels there, popular stopovers for travelers and reps. Now shabeens.

We had a district surgeon and two doctors, ladies had babies in this hospital. Now no more.

I was chairman of the farmers rate payers association for a number of years. Each time a new council was elected I would go and introduce myself to the new mayor and MM. On each occasion they were celebrating “local government’ absolutely clueless as to what lay ahead. I once told them the game was over, now they had to run a 30 million rand business. They were gobsmacked, had no clue, one was a teacher, the other a health worker. Never seen more than a R20k salary cheque.

It is now a horrible little dirty, dusty town full of drunks and bums. Those that live there have intermittent electricity and water. The first council after 1994 sold the water pumps for the town. They were not on at the time they had a look so decided they were scrap. The replacements are too small.

This is all over the rural areas of SA, talk about scorched earth policy, this is what the ANC has done to these little towns.

Apart from being hard on the locals it plays into our hands as farmers. The land allocation that this ANC has been trying to get off the ground since 1994 will now never work.

Who will move their families to a town or district that will mean their children will have to go to very expensive boarding schools, no shopping for the wives, no work for the wives?

We grew up here, have learned to live with it, made plans, but a new comer won’t last a week.

Well done the despicable ANC.

as a young boy my maternal uncle was the municipal manager in Elliot in the Eastern Cape in the mid 60’s. It was a quaint little town, a hamlet in the mountains. We spent a day down there last year on the way to whateverPEiscallednow. The decline is indescribable, could not believe my eyes. You need a 4×4 to drive down main street/Winnie Mandela drive. I could not believe how run down the place was, rubbish everywhere. Next night in King Willian’s Town (orwhateveritscallednow)… the biggest rubbish dump I have ever seen in all my days. The only place I have ever seen that looks worse is Kuruman.

Maybe this is all part of the bigger plan. The systematic murdering of farmers did not drive them off the land, the removal of the commando system did not drive them off.

By decimating the small towns and forcing us to leave may be the next step.

I think not, we have made plans and adapted to stay.

This article is far too soft, Wandile needs to say it like it is. The powers that be need to hear, we have via organized agriculture been telling government for years but they choose not to hear.

Ever noticed, every small town has a that one vibrant, modern and well sign posted government building……. the Sassa offices.

You forgot about the KFC.

Took a road trip a few years ago to a spot in the Eastern Cape – from Gauteng. Never again…those potholes tried to take our wheels off while we were driving. Learnt recently that the place we visited closed down (before covid) because fewer Gauteng visitors were coming. EC govt wants to create jobs but then doesn’t understand the connection between a functional road and job protection.
Unions don’t understand the connection between a functional government and job creation. All they do is march for increases for the few who do have jobs. I suppose we should lower our expectations…

Three thousand years ago a wise man made this statement: Woe to the land where the slaves (sic) are the ruler.

And yet the people will still vote ANC… Boggles the mind!

And so does Roelof Botha.

Recently drove to CPT from JHB and spent a weekend in Kimberley to show the kids the big hole / diamond mind. The potholes in the roads especially in/around town are unbelievable – Its sad that everything in SA is falling apart – Not only some things, but everything. We had the opportunity to be the best country on the continent, but it becomes clearer every day that in 10 years, we will probably be in the same place with water as we are currently with electricity (if not worse) – Don’t want to imagine the electricity situation then…only 10 years, not 100 years…

Alas, it’s no longer even just the small towns anymore. Service delivery issues aside, the current state of the economy is showing through across the country, with small businesses closed and shops/office space to let or for sale. It seems only the estate agents are optimistic, both with their advertised prices as well as the all too common words like “what a bargain”, “this won’t stay on the market for long”…. I usually beg to differ with those sentiments, with once prime real estate just not selling.

…meanwhile an ANC T-shirt states: LET’S GROW SOUTH AFRICA TOGETHER

“lol”

Grow??

Maybe the ANC implied NEGATIVE GROWTH…

What they mean is the following – Let us grow our Tender pipeline and grow my fat ANC backed bank balance with the stupidity of voter fodder……

“This is a CHALLENGE that the South African government should face head-on”

Hogwash! This is NOT a ‘challenge’…..it’s a (serious) PROBLEM! Hence please sort your PROBLEMS Govt….NOW!

(…definition of a ‘challenge’: a less-serious problem that can be dealt with later)

Abit like telling a rapist to stop raping… Or a crocodile to stop eating…

The trend in Europe with high rents in urban areas and the new hybrid work-from-home-office paradigm shifts is a mass exodus of young folk from the cities back to the countryside. This could catch-on here too in the not too distant future and hopefully revive the small rural towns.

About 59% of municipalities are in financial distress. RSA is then a failed state?

Every thing is collapsing.
Every body is protesting.
Every body is voting anc.
Is this a matter of intelligence?

Prior to 1994 municipal councillors were either unpaid or merely received a small stipend for their time spent in attending meetings. They were invariably individuals with an interest in the welfare of their town and the common good of its inhabitants.
With the arrival of the ANC that all changed. The ANC saw an opportunity to artificially enrich thousands of its supporters by assigning huge salaries to municipal councillors, mayors etc., in the certain knowledge that ANC votahs would ensure their elevation to unearned wealth.
An immediate and cost-effective way to restore the municipalities to health is to dispense with councillors’ salaries forthwith. If they won’t work for nothing they don’t get the job and won’t want it anyway. That will ensure the right people apply for council positions and return the present incumbents to where they belong. In turn, the newly composed councils would be empowered to investigate and monitor the performances of appointed officials, which again would result in a cleanout of the dross that currently occupies municipal office blocks – and the freeing of large sums of money to repair the destruction meted out to the municipalities by the former scoundrels in office.

It is the Communistic method of Redistribution of Wealth by idjuts taking from the productive and transferring ill gotten gains to the unproductive and totally incompetent.

…. That’s what happens when all the grasshoppers decide to pack bags and leave town.

But this what the average south african wants and deserves – he votes for this repeatedly.

Very awkward use of the word “communalist” makes for a somewhat amusing read in the comments above.

The word was coined by the British colonialists in the early 20th century, specifically in reference to Muslim and Hindu groups in what was then still a “unified” India, in the run up to the split with Pakistan.

In fact in Africa today, SA is not even considered in the top 10 of “communalist” nations, with Nigeria, Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, Kenya and Uganda topping the bill.

What is of more interest is that one of the head to head rivals to these “communalist” groups was Nationalists.

And so too it is with the state of affairs in South Africa today. Specific mention of farmers as economic leaders in these small rural towns does not also clearly state that more often than not these Boers are organised in tight knit Para military style collaborations with famously nationalistic motivations.

Behind every token black commercial farmer is a grouping of 20 to 100 of these collaborators- all soaking up the subsidised and scale benefits of tokenism and corruption.

Mention of Clarens is a good case in point. The economy there, billed as the “jewel of the Free state” is very well supported by a steady flow of weekend and holiday tourists from the major urban areas of Jhb, Durban, Bloem and even further afield like Cape Town (enroute to the Kruger) and the overseas market (covid gods permitting of course!).

The local farming community has very little input into the flows and economics of Clarens. Clarens is in fact conveniently located on the slopes of the “Sitlohfe/ Horeb” mountain which was part of the British Colonial demarcation known as “The Warden Line”- loosely a line drawn on the map from Warden to Bethlehem, passing through the Golden Gate Mountains, Sitlohfe and Clarens.

This should officially have been the international border between the Basotho and the Boers, if not for several contentious military interventions.

Historic narratives aside, commercial farming has become more and more mono-cultured and technology/ capital intensive/ a major proportion of their expenditures are directed at expensive imported white goods, fertilizers, pesticides, seeds and capital equipment. ; Less and less to local supply.

This is indeed part of the problem- the traditional way of doing things has significantly changed whilst population growth has placed a higher demand for work and output in the rural areas.

Essentially the answers lie in deploying the available land and resources in a more equitable and efficient way. A wider array of outputs and services, including healthier options than chemically fertilized, genetically modified Commercial agricultural produce and a broader respect and understanding than the narrow Boer/ colonialist rhetoric and lack of accommodation of traditional cultural and bio diverse opportunities in what have essentially always been tribal trust areas, is required.

This is where 4IR, eco tourism, permaculture and blockchain come into relevance, The old structures are melting down so that the new technologies and processes can kick in at scale and begin disrupting the Nationalist rhetoric that has melted down to its corrupted lowest common denominator.

Communalism is the shared ownership of the means of production, the belief that accountability is shared by the collective, that the value of the individual is determined by his contributions to the group, and individualism is frowned upon, that income should be shared with the community and that public resources can be exploited for personal gain.

In short – the ANC is communalist.

“Communalism is a political philosophy and economic system that integrates communal ownership and confederations of highly localized independent communities. … In particular, earlier communities and movements advocating such practices were often described as “anarchist”, “communist” or “socialist”.”
https://en.m.wikipedia.org › wiki
Communalism – Wikipedia

What you will always see is a row of fancy cars parked outside the shabbiest buildings in town. Dirty, broken windows, litter, beggars but the smart cars are all lined up outside.

I have noticed this phenomenon, and the only explanation I can find is that individuals from a Reformist or Calvinist background tend to respect property rights and the rule of law, whereas communalists, in general, do not respect these factors. Reformists(Europeans) tend to be individualists and value property in the form of land, investments, a house, and equipment while communalists, per definition, are not individualistic and they value people, not property. Therefore, the communalists are focused on consumption, not saving, while the capitalist treats consumerism with disdain and focuses on saving, investments, and property.

Land in Europe was scarce and there were many people who needed to live off that land. Property rights developed to allocate this scarce resource. Land in Africa was always abundant and the population density in Africa is the lowest in the world. Africans had an abundance of land, but a shortage of people to work the land to provide food. They did not need to develop property rights or title deeds, but they developed the system of lobola instead. They have property rights in people. People are the means of production. Polygamy ensures a steady flow of children to plant and harvest. Big families were a sign of wealth and seniority in the community. Slavery originated in an economic environment where people are more valuable than land, or where the value of land cannot be extracted without labor.

With the greatest respect to the traditions, if you buy a wife or two, and you own that purchase and the yield on that human property, how is it different from the definition of slavery?

“Cyril said”
“The ANC will implement some new policy”
“Some other politician opened his mouth”…

None of it is even remotely believable and until their is even an inkling of REAL action, nothing will change the (now accelerated) demise of SA.

A well written and well researched article – thank you. Reading the responses, it’s easy to see the rising anger and frustration amongst the tax and rate payers in this country….those that are left, that is! With so many big hitters leaving for fairer/greener pastures, you have to wonder if the rest of us will have the energy to fight to retain a decent fair life here – or is staying just a hiding to nothing!
Time for racist BEE policies to be scrapped.
Time for the SAP to be cleaned out and crime to become what it is….crime!
Time to introduce birth control measures to ensure a decent life and education for the majority
Time for CR to clean out his house and put it in order
It’s about time and that time is now…before it’s too late and we become just another Sh..hole African country.

You’re advise is about 20 years late

A simple, cheap and effective solution to fix the municipalities:

Make the city and town council positions honorary again, in other words, with no payment.

Pre 94 these honorary councils worked quit well, attracting the kind of counselor that had life, business and professional experience. They put the interests of the towns first.

The salaries saved can be used for an improvement in service delivery.

End of comments.

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