The stark choice facing the ANC is to ‘reconnect with the values of ordinary South Africans, or to continue its drift towards racial Marxism as epitomized by its standing policy to expropriate private property without compensation’, says the Institute of Race Relations (IRR).

Highlighting the emphasis laid on EWC by President Cyril Ramaphosa at the party’s first policy conference since dropping below 50% nationwide in last year’s municipal elections, the IRR points out that its own research has repeatedly shown ‘these are exactly the kinds of promises that thrill ideologically extreme revanchists while alienating the majority of South Africans’.

In a statement, the IRR says that Ramaphosa ‘did not mince his words at the event’s opening, calling the policy conference “a defining moment” for his party, and adding that the “deliberations over the next three days” will “determine the fate” of the ANC’.

‘Ramaphosa was similarly unequivocal on the choice being made. “We must undertake to make a dramatic, as well as a disruptive, lasting change,” he said, before specifying that “despite the setback of our efforts to amend Section 25 of our [sic] Constitution we must continue to pursue all available options, including through legislation, like the Expropriation Bill, to implement the resolution of our 54th Conference on land redistribution without compensation”.

‘President Ramaphosa added that the expropriation of private property without compensation is an instrument “that we must utilize” for various purposes, including “empowerment especially of the women who continue to toil on the land”.

‘The IRR has shown, repeatedly, that these are exactly the kinds of promises that thrill ideologically extreme revanchists while alienating the majority of South Africans.’

The IRR says that polling it commissioned in 2020 included the question: ‘Do you prefer a political party which promises faster economic growth and more jobs, or one which promises land expropriation without compensation as redress for past wrongs?’

‘Roughly 15% of all respondents, including 15% of black respondents and 15% of white respondents, said they preferred expropriation without compensation. 80% of black respondents and 80% of white respondents said they preferred faster growth and more jobs.

‘South Africa has the highest recorded unemployment rate on earth, and some of the most critically threatened property rights. The causal connection between strong property rights and economic growth that adds jobs is concretely demonstrable. Likewise, as Zimbabwe and Venezuela demonstrate, efforts by lacklustre governments to secure waning power through belated efforts at throttling property rights cause economic collapse, civil rights devastation, democratic malfunction, and increased food poverty.’

Said IRR Head of Campaigns Gabriel Crouse: ‘EWC means “Stay in the unemployment line”. EWC means “Don’t invest your money here, it’s not safe from crooks and it’s not safe from the police either”. EWC means “Don’t build factories here”. EWC means that the ANC is not listening and it is not learning. EWC means that revenge trumps renewal. Finally, EWC means that the party is almost over.’