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BEE isn’t doing what it’s supposed to: former ANC treasurer

BEE isn’t doing what it’s supposed to: former ANC treasurer

Businessman and former ANC treasurer general Mathews Phosa has expressed misgivings about the ability of the current black economic empowerment policy to lead to real broad-based black economic empowerment (BBBEE).

Speaking at a conference on black economic empowerment on Thursday, Phosa did not hold back on his criticism of black economic empowerment.

“The present black economic empowerment policy… is with respect, not a cure-all to real broad-based black economic empowerment. Millions of black people feel left out and are very sceptical since they cannot enter the formal economy. They only see a few that largely benefited from tenderpreneurship and not from hard work,” Phosa said.

He said empowerment should be broad and based on education and skills. “Rearranging” ownership through legislated processes and codes, as is the current practice, brings no benefits as sustainable jobs are often lost to accommodate a new “empowerment” partner through paying for the costs associated with the moves, he said.

“I wonder if those with empowerment shares in struggling commodities feel empowered today, or do they feel overwhelmingly indebted? It is our duty to focus our efforts on removing all the real barriers to growth and job creation, Phosa said.

Phosa’s comments come amid general apprehension among companies and businesses about the effect of the recently updated codes of good practice. There are fears that companies will lose BEE ratings under the new codes, which now put increased emphasis on supplier, enterprise and skills development.

The amended BBBEE Act has reduced the number of compliance categories from seven to five. Employment equity and management control have merged, while preferential procurement and enterprise development are now one category.

Ryland Fisher, associate publisher and editor at Topco Media, said businesses are worried about the new codes as these affect them at several tiers. Fisher said there is a general sentiment that sectors which do little business with government are slow to transform.


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  • DISgruntled

    Racist policies should be shown the disregard that they deserve. Racism is racism no matter how much BS you coat it with.

  • Ga77a

    Well, of course bloated inefficient companies that make it on the BEE ticket are bad for employment and the economy. As the article states majority of the benefit is wiped out from moving the business relationships to ’empowerment partners’. This also means that these businesses cannot compete internationally in any other economy, that should be a massive red flag. What we are breeding are leaders of bad businesses that falsely believe they are successful in a vacuum and are delusional about their privilege.

  • maxmarktg

    Now 21 years later, we need to recognise that BEE does not work. There is no dishonour in recognising that something will not work and then stopping it. Before it leads to total collapse. Policymakers please take note.

  • Nextlevel

    I’m retrenched and looking at the skilled employment vacancies there are many that say only ee candidates will be considered. But of course my 20+ years experience are making us worse off than were they to employee an ee

  • Leon

    BEE will NEVER work no matter how you change the rules and format.

    One reason is that it is nothing other than Social Engineering and see how that worked for one Adolf Hitler.

    Secondly, it is amazing that even for a wealthy person such as Mathews Phosa, numbers don’t mean anything.

    The black to non-black population ratio is roughly 50:4.5.

    It seems that nobody in La La Land cares about numbers or how to use and interpret them.

  • Peter the Observer

    “Empowerment should be broad and based on education and skills.
    “Rearranging” ownership through legislated processes and codes, as is
    the current practice, brings no benefits as sustainable jobs are often
    lost to accommodate a new “empowerment” partner through paying for the
    costs associated with the moves”
    Simply put is that you cannot legislate empowerment into being … it comes from within, using ones creativity, ingenuity, hard work, perseverance, responsibility, reliability and the willingness to do and get involved. by going through this process the people grow within themselves, it cannot be put there by someone else. The BEE program says to the black people you don’t have to do any of this, it is all done for you by someone else and you must just take and give nothing back !!! It can never work, it will never work, rather drop it now !!!
    Rather educate the people to do this for them selves ….. they will be better people for it.

    This BEE program will eventually become a dirty word if the Government sticks to it …..

    • Very well put and the economic score board reinforces the failure of BEE very clearly. For stating these truths one then gets accused of being anti progress and racist which demonstrates the radical racism inculcated by the present government. Unfortunately the racists have to bring this beautiful country to its knees before it hits home. The growing poor cannot however defend themselves form their plight and remain the worst affected, very sad treatment of our fellow humans by the ultimate racists in power.

  • Dirk gnodde

    Do you know what BEE stands for Better Educated European

    • Jonathan Pompies

      he he he…

  • Racism has never worked and never will, economic growth is the only way to included all in the economy, surely its simple to see as this lot seem very challenged still?

  • Umlazi

    So tired of these ANC Racists with their BEE, they are no better than any other Racists. The ANC is the biggest reason that racism still exists and they use it as a crutch as they are not capable of doing a proper job, so when they fail they can blame someone else. Level the playing fields so that Anyone regardless of skin colour can participate and No more excuses – the same goes for business and sport. Why are the blacks not able to participate fairly? are they still so uneducated? Do they lack talent? No only the politicians in the ANC need BEE otherwise no one would employ them to sit sleeping in Parliament – what a disgrace! Sis man!

  • Mucaine



    By haymaker

    Interesting point of view Affirmative Action: “South Africa is the only country in the world where affirmative action is in the favour of the majority who has complete political control. The fact that the political majority requires affirmative action to protect them against a 9% minority group is testament to a complete failure on their part to build their own wealth making structures, such that their only solution is to take it from others.”
    Finally, a word recently coined to describe South Africa’s current political situation.

    Ineptocracy (in-ep-toc’-ra-cy)
    – a system of government where the least capable to lead are elected by the least capable of producing, and where the members of society least likely to sustain themselves or succeed, are rewarded with goods and services paid for by the confiscated wealth of a diminishing number of producers.

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