Daniel Friedman
2 minute read
10 Oct 2018
12:59 pm

Why Mboweni’s appointment may please the EFF

Daniel Friedman

Our new finance minister has expressed views on nationalisation and radical economic transformation similar to those of the red berets.

Tito Mboweni with Mbuyiseni Ndlozi. Picture: @titi_mboweni

The EFF released a statement on Wednesday expressing their support for President Cyril Ramaphosa’s decision to accept former finance minister Nhlanhla Nene’s resignation.

This is no surprise considering the party’s apparent prioritisation of Nene’s removal last week and assertions from the Twitter accounts of both the party and its leader Julius Malema that they had “tried to warn” South Africa about Nene.

The statement also mentioned our new Finance Minister Tito Mboweni, in a fairly dry and factual way.

“We note the appointment of Tito Mboweni as minister of finance and impress on him to prioritise the interests of the people of South Africa, in particular the poor, black South Africans who suffer poverty, unemployment and hunger.”

However, some have suggested that the appointment of Mboweni may have left EFF leaders smiling behind the scenes. Back in April, the minister expressed ideas on economic policy that some pointed out bore more than a passing resemblance to the radical left-wing party’s ideas.

READ MORE: Tito Mboweni amazed that he’s taller than Ndlozi

The Citizen reported in September that the EFF and Mboweni have been surprisingly friendly with each other recently, with Mboweni trending in April for the series of tweets, which called for the greater socialisation of capital.

Mboweni typed up a short prayer asking for leaders to open their eyes and ears and “do four things”.

“The state must own 40% of mining companies, start a state bank, implement appropriate land use planning and create a sovereign wealth fund. That is radical economic transformation!!”

READ MORE: What changed Mboweni’s mind?

The EFF also wants to create a state bank and nationalise all mining as well as all land.

Mboweni explained that, in his opinion, appropriate land use planning would involve demarcating land clearly for “housing, agriculture, grazing, forestry, tourism, leisure, schooling, hospitals, etc. Now, before people do their own will.” He added that the most urgent task in this respect would be to “allocate land immediately for residential purposes. Urgent. Really URGENT!!”

This policy echoed the EFF call for all state land to be state-owned or controlled.

Many of the responses he received to his tweets accused him of thinking like the EFF or even being part of them. Others praised him for the exact same thing.



Additional reporting by Citizen reporter. 

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