No matter which indexes you use to measure the performance of South Africa since 2009, South Africa has experienced a significant decline. To name a few:
Per capita income, ease of doing business, employment, commodity exports, and foreign direct investment are all worse. Still, none of these measures would ever make it into a State of the Nation address.
One thing is for sure about the ANC; they can weave a good story. New world-class cities and bullet trains to transport people from one end of the country to the other sound very exciting.
The recent “National Rail Policy White Paper” gazetted by Minister of transport Fikile Mbalula outlines the future of rail in South Africa as far into the future as 2050.
Painting a pretty picture of a future with high-speed bullet trains is a tactic to divert attention from what is right in front of our eyes. This is a classic ANC sleight of hand.
The graph above hardly needs explanation. The decline in passenger rail journeys is phenomenal. The rail infrastructure has been decimated, both passenger and commercial rail.
This is the same playbook as in the public health sector. Somehow a shiny new thing like National Health Insurance will “fix” the horrendous state of public hospitals.
We have a case of the ANC saying don’t look at how incompetent we are at managing basic services; look at this fantastic new thing that we are promising. If you continue to give us your vote, we promise to give you this. NOT.
The curtain is falling on this act. The fact that the ANC is writing policy papers as far-reaching as 2050 shows how blind they are to their imminent fall from the stage.