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SA could become a failed state – ANC top official

by Hadiza Musa Yusuf
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The secretary general of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress Party (ANC) has said the country could become a failed state as incessant power cuts threaten to cripple the economy.

He revealed this in an exclusive interview with BBC.

Fikile Mbalula revealed that “if certain things are not resolved, we will become a failed state, but we are not journeying towards that direction”.

Mr Mbalula added that South Africa’s economy “has been battered”.

“While external forces such as the global economy, impact of Covid, and war in Ukraine all played a role, the blame also lay partly with some of our own weaknesses in terms of managing the economy well,” he said.

Mbalula highlighted the staggering unemployment rate, with one in two young South Africans without jobs, and 60% of the population living below the poverty line. Despite these challenges, he expressed optimism about the country’s recovery, stating that it is “recovering well.”

Defending the ANC’s economic record after almost three decades in power, Mr Mbulala said the government had cushioned “our people from the worst, after a legacy of 300 years of deprivation and a mismanaged country and economy”.

He acknowledged that regular “load shedding”, an ongoing period of widespread power cuts, was at the heart of the country’s woes – and with dire consequences.

He said this could affect the political fortunes of the ANC in next year’s elections.

“It will affect the fortunes of the ANC to receive just an outright majority…if it is not dealt with decisively”, he said.

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