Former reconstruction and development minister Jay Naidoo says South Africa is in serious trouble and is showing signs of a failed state.
Naidoo is a seasoned politician who was the founding general secretary of the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu).
He also served in former President Nelson Mandela’s cabinet as minister of Reconstruction and Development and Post, Telecommunications, and Broadcasting between 1994 and 1999.
Speaking to WorldView, Naidoo said South Africa is showing signs of a failed state and is basically at ground zero.
He added that record unemployment levels and the fact that many young people will not find a job in their lifetime show the country is in serious trouble.
In the same discussion, Efficient Group chief economist Dawie Roodt said the country is in deep trouble, and things will get worse.
“We have a hugely destructive government, without real ideologies or policies, and which borders on criminal,” Roodt said.
The state sector is also inefficient, and state-owned enterprises like Eskom and Transnet are poorly run.
The result of the poor government is that South Africa has record levels of unemployment and rising levels of poverty.
He added that unemployment and poverty would get much worse before it gets better.
Roodt said the high levels of poverty and unemployment with rising food costs is a recipe for mass unrest and disorder. It puts South Africa on the brink of disaster.
“My biggest fear is that a spark can make the situation explode. It is a highly volatile situation waiting to explode,” he said.
Roodt argues that you first have to solve the country’s political problems to solve the country’s economic problems.
“We must get rid of the destructive tripartite alliance and replace it with something better.”
Naidoo added that South Africans must put tremendous pressure on the government to do their job because “we pay them well”.
South Africans are the kind that gets pushed and pushed but then takes a stand. I am hoping that point has arrived,” he said.