Publication: Express UK
Author: Thomas Harding
SOUTH Africa’s white minority has been warned that they face an “uprising” if they fail to make urgent economic reforms, ruling black politicians have said.
One radical party has called for a Zimbabwe-style land grab of the estimated 80 per cent white-owned land.There are also fears among the 1.6million British community who have emigrated to South Africa for cheap living that they could be forced home.
Following heavy defeats in this week’s municipal elections politicians from the ruling African National Congress have spoken out against what they call “economic apartheid.”
We need black economic empowerment. We need to take over the running of companies. They cannot be in white hands forever
Kebby Maphatsoe – veterans’ minister
But in municipal elections this week they lost the iconic Nelson Mandela Bay area although the ANC has 54 per cent of the vote nationally.
South Africa’s 55million population is 77 per cent black and nine per cent white but blacks are becoming increasingly frustrated at inequalities.
They get half the pay of whites, only three per cent of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange is black-owned and the four major banks are white-dominated.
Lindiwe Zulu, the ANC’s business minister, said: “The whites made their money during apartheid and they are benefiting more now. If you don’t deal with the marginalisation of blacks in the economy you are going to be in trouble.”
here are also worries among the white community.
Briton David Mitchell said: “There is a danger of racial tension getting to the point where people point to the whites and demand their land back.”
In townships like Soweto people are angry. South Africa has 27 per cent unemployment and is heading into recession.
Richard Mbele, 36, a science teacher said: “There’s a bomb waiting to blast. “The only black power we have is to allow the rich to get richer. Some people say are even saying it was better in the time of apartheid because there were more jobs.”