The growth of South Africa´s black middle class has not been sustained under President Jacob Zuma´s leadership, long-serving ANC member and businessman Sipho Pityana said on Thursday.
“What has happened that is so dramatic, that the president has done to make us claim that he has driven the transformation agenda better than others?” he asked from his offices in Johannesburg.
The Black Business Council had expressed support for Zuma, due what it said was the progress his administration had made in advancing black economic empowerment. Pityana, who is chairperson of AngloGold Ashanti, disagreed.
“The period 2002 to 2007 saw the fastest growth of the black middle class,” he said.
He said the early years of black economic empowerment saw meaningful and major transactions between South African corporates and black businesses. This has not happened under Zuma.
“If we want to start saying this is a great champion of transformation, we cannot afford to lose him, let´s shift the rhetoric from facts and look at a comparative analysis to say what has Zuma done and what have his predecessors done.”
Speaking at former sports minister and reverend Makhenkesi Stofile´s funeral last month, Pityana criticised Zuma´s leadership and asked him to step down. Zuma has no respect for the constitution, he said.