The natural perils of BEE

President of the Republic of South Africa and the ANC, Jacob Zuma, recently appointed a Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) Council. The name switch from BEE (which is also misleading) to BBBEE came after BEE got exposed as an elite enrichment scheme. So for all intents and purposes this switch is aimed at fooling the masses that there is now an intention to embark on mass economic empowerment and that they should just wait for their turn. We know nothing has changed so we will continue to call this elite enrichment scheme by its discredited name and will therefore call the Council a BEE Council.

To this day we are yet to see the promised trickle down benefits of BEE in the African communities. It must be remembered that Africans where economically marginalized and excluded from benefiting in the wealth of their land and labour. BEE does not seek to redress this historic imbalance but is a decoy to inculcate a false perception of economic advancement to keep the masses hoping and in a state of lull. On the other side of the coin BEE is just a sweetcode for co-option of the few traitors amongst victims of apartheid settler colonialism into the international and settler capitalist establishment.

Tiny politically connected BEE beneficiaries have neither the capital nor collateral of their own for their businesses. They receive funding and security from the same establishment that must actually be toppled and repay these with huge interests. In other words BEE is a business boost for the capitalist establishment instead of being an economic boost to the impoverished African working class masses. Even government agencies that provide business funding with provision of less or no security receive funding from the same quarters.

This BEE Council is therefore an elite economic lobby group of the few who demand a piece of the cake for themselves but in our name. It is the voice of business interests of the petty bourgeoisies and those clamoring to join the international and settler capitalist class as its lapdogs. The appointment of the BEE Council should be exposed for what it is and dismissed. It will not change anything.

The plight of the poor African working class masses cannot be left to the philanthropic and altruistic devices of the petty bourgeois. BEE is bound to fail and only a state owned, controlled and planned economy can ensure the most equitable distribution of wealth.

Hulisani Mmbara
Chief Editor
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