Daily Maverick | Zita Hansungule, Daniel McLaren, Tabitha Paine, Samantha Waterhouse | 19 July 2021
Budget Justice Coalition members are deeply disturbed by the unrest that unfolded across the country over the past few weeks. The violence and destruction are devastating at a time when many in South Africa already face hunger and poverty, made worse by a vicious third wave of coronavirus infections.
Zita Hansungule is from the Centre for Child Law, Daniel McLaren is budget analyst at SECTION27, Tabitha Paine is a researcher at Open Secrets, Samantha Waterhouse is from the Women in Democracy Initiative, Dullah Omar Institute. This article is written on behalf of and with input from the members of the Budget Justice Coalition (BJC) a civil society coalition of 20 organisations that aims to build people’s participation in and understanding of South Africa’s budget and planning processes.
The unrest of the past two weeks has complex and varying motivations. These include food and economic insecurity, which have been compounded by the Covid-19 pandemic, the weaknesses within the state to address this, as well as factionalism within the ruling party.
Budget Justice Coalition (BJC) condemns the violence, looting and attacks on critical infrastructure such as trucks, roads, water, food and medicine warehouses and the Shell and BP South African Petroleum Refineries (Sapref) oil refinery. The ANC must take steps now to deal with the criminality that thrives within its ranks, which has allowed the state to be captured, and for looting and corruption to undermine democracy and the economy.