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The race between the EFF and the ANCYL to outdo each other has begun in earnest. It is very strange that the ANCYL calls for a boycott of ABSA instead of using legal instruments to remedy what it perceives to be an act of sabotage by the bank.

It is quite bizarre that the ANCYL points to Barclays being fined $2.4 Billion and $638 million for rigging and misconduct by US authorities and yet leaves out a similar option for the ruling party in our country.

The ANCYL should begin by requesting the cabinet to get the appropriate South African regulatory authority to investigate ABSA and to await the outcome.

Instead of doing so, the ANCYL has predetermined that ABSA is guilty and should therefore be boycotted by the ruling party. Is the league saying that the ANC government is lacking in instruments to deal with the problems of the plummeting rand and now requires robust action from the ANCYL to remedy the situation? Is the ANC mobilising its militants to deal with ABSA because the state is quite helpless? Is that what is happening?

COPE believes that this is a diversion tactic. Instead of holding President Jacob Zuma centrally liable for the collapse of the Rand, the ANCYL is seeking a scape goat. The president’s reckless dismissal of Nene, the extensive and irresponsible borrowing by the state over the last seven years, the government’s mounting consumption side expenditure and its policy failures have impacted very negatively on the rand. That is where the blame should attach.

In the last general election the ANC went out proclaiming that it had a good story to tell. It was certainly a smokescreen and now that the smoke is lifting everyone can see the truth for what it is.

What the ANCYL is doing with its boycott call is going to add to the woes of the Rand. The ruling party should have a meeting with the ANCYL and ask it to toe the official line instead of compounding the confusion and intensifying uncertainty. Our economy does not need boycotting. It needs nurturing and careful handling. What a mess the ruling party is making of the economy.

Issued by Dennis Bloem, COPE spokesperson


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