Today, economic inequality in South Africa is effectively a proxy for racial divide. As Voetsek has revealed countless times, the economic legacy of apartheid is as rampant as it is damning.
In 2013 the government introduced the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) Act.
This law requires private companies to drive black economic empowerment– from jobs offered, skills development provided, to representation of black South Africans in management teams, amongst other measures.
The BBBEE Commission, established to ensure compliance, surveyed businesses earlier this year. Unbelievably, they found that two-thirds of businesses are fronting! For those less familiar with this, the South Africa Department for Trade and Industry helpfully provide a definition of this as the “deliberate circumvention or attempted circumvention of the BBBEE Act”
Given how at breaking point this country is over the economic marginalisation of black South Africans, it is shocking that such a confident majority of companies today can have such disregard for the most serious of issues facing our generation. Clearly, big business needs to do much more to empower black South Africans.