The Second Coming of Nongqawuse and the Lean Spoils of National Wealth

The Second Coming of Nongqawuse and the Lean Spoils of National Wealth

Ayabonga Cawe | Amandla Online | 02 August, 2021

“Itsha nganina, indlu yeCongress? Azi babebona ntoni na, ooSivuma-ngamehlo? Lumkelani!  Iyatshona iqanawe yeSizwe. Nina nisalibele kukuqwith’ezidosheni”. 

Nontsizi Mgqwetho, Uqekeko lwe-Congress

The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear.” 

Antonio Gramsci, Prison Notebooks

“Today the vultures are too numerous and too voracious in proportion to the lean spoils of the national wealth”.

Frantz Fanon, The Pitfalls of National Consciousness 

You who have no work, Speak.
You who have no homes, Speak.
You who have no schools, Speak.
You who have to run like chickens from the vulture, Speak.

Dora Tamana
  1. Multiple intersecting stories?

Some have characterized the chaotic scenes and the fires that engulfed Gauteng and KwaZulu Natal,  as a generalized and chaotic reality explained by ‘multiple intersecting stories’.  Some have said it is about Zuma and his incarceration. Some have said it is the type of disruption reminiscent of the Medellin cartel at the height of its reign of terror, pursued by an ANC faction aimed at drawing concessions from the state, at an economic, political and prosecutorial level. While largely speculation and conjecture, these views may all be true to some degree or patently hyperbolic; but they fail to capture the enduring paths the last few days have locked us into. As Italian Marxist, Antonio Gramsci suggested, while the system of a particular kind of ‘order’ has not lost faith in its own strength and future, ‘things do not remain exactly as they were’ (Gramsci, 1971:235). 

Indeed while things are not the same; history teaches us that they are in many instances uncannily the same. While faced with new conditions, we often marshal the tools of yesteryear in the conflicts of today. The burning water treatment plants, shopping complexes, factories and broken supply chains are testimony to the ever latent power of political chaos; and we have seen in earlier episodes in South Africa the enduring effects of those who stand ready to burn the barnyard with all of us in it.

2. The Second Coming of Nongqawuse – first as tragedy and second as deja vu 

Just over 120 years ago in 1901, Lord Kitchener cut off food supply links to the Boers, torched 30 000 farmhouses and destroyed more than 40 settlements, placing many Afrikaner women,  children and African servants in concentration camps. It would serve as a rousing moment for a subsequent Afrikaner nationalism that would later become a defining feature of twentieth century South Africa. 

Yet this was not the first time the British had done this. Earlier, during the Xhosa wars of 1834-35 and 1846-47, the Empire had responded to ambushes of supply trains by Xhosa guerrillas, by attacking the food production system of the African population, effectively displacing many of these communities. This they did through what they would call the ‘scorched earth policy’. One British colonel commented, following the burning of Rharhabe villages right up to the Upper Keiskamma River –  the whole country around and before us was in a blaze’, ‘the soldiers were busily employed in burning the huts and driving the Caffres towards the frontier’ (Stapleton, 2016:100). 

Undoubtedly, this ‘scorched earth’ approach would not only change the material basis of life in the Eastern Cape, but also the role of the patrilineal institutions that had governed the political life of the people of that part of the world. The capture of Xhosa women and children for labour on the settler farms and the seizure of thousands of cattle in the marauding raids of the British, reorganized life in ways that stripped the Xhosa polity (and the traditional authorities at the centre of this), of the coercive economic power so central to its political authority. Further, it made these communities vulnerable to any environmental and objective factors that could irrevocably change their social milieu. Yet many of the Xhosa aristocrats, even during the throes of a drought, sought their feudal tribute from a seemingly resentful base of commoners. Because power entertains no vacuum, this discontent would be channelled into the mystique of the super-natural to explain the disruptive and life-shattering influence of British invasion. 

Later, when thousands of Xhosa commoners cried out, ‘Mlanjeni, our Chief’ and slaughtered royal cattle in deference to popular prophet, Mlanjeni they were striking against the economic foundations of a failed political class. By 1856 what had occurred was the fragmentation of aristocratic power, in the context of an ongoing military and cultural offensive by the British. What followed was the emaciation of the African community through the cattle-killing of Nongqawuse, which in the context of a widespread famine delivered a pliant labour pool to agricultural and mining capital in subsequent decades, and largely framed South Africa as we know it.

Are we faced with the same moment? Or similar inflection point? Where the stench of chaos, smoke and the inferno of burning food supply lines, portends a post-Apartheid cattle killing, catalysed by the ‘lung-sickness’ (or COVID 19) that robs livestock, livelihood and life? 

Conversely, are we in search of the mysticism to explain the seemingly inexplicable? Have we in our rejection of the ordering of society under conditions of lockdown and a post-Apartheid low growth trap, been faced with a choice, catalyzed by the incarceration of former President Zuma to ‘strike against the economic foundations of a failed political class’ in a way that represents a new terrain in post-Apartheid South Africa?  

The frenzy in retail stores, widespread disruption and desperation highlights what many in the Left have characterized as a crisis of social reproduction. The inability, under conditions of austerity, declining corporate taxes and the age old institutions (migrant labour, lumpen-patriarchy and anti-black racism) of division; to institutionalise’ the shifting of the costs of producing successive generations of the workforce from industry to the black household. It is this social context, similar to that which Dora Tamana observed, ‘there are no creches and nurseries for our children, there are no homes for the aged, there is no one to care for the sick’ (Tamana, 1981) – all the social reproductive needs of our people have been placed at the altar of cost recovery and the philosophy of market allocation. 

The social reproductive crisis arises precisely because of a crisis of under-utilization of the same logic – underutilization of both productive capacity and of labour. Put simply, capitalism no longer needs to produce things nor to employ labour to accumulate. It is further deepened by the systemic dysfunction that unfolds at a municipal level, that limits the progressivity of social wage interventions at a local level. It doesn’t mean much to have ‘free basic services’ or recreational and educational facilities in the local IDP, if these are delivered intermittently and unevenly, if at all in some cases.

Further capitalism has also made large parts of the world, ecologically  uninhabitable or subject to recurrent environmental crises (floods, droughts etc.). All of these have implications for the planetary and social crisis we find ourselves in. Much like the cattle killing that ‘culled’ 75% of the Xhosa population of the Cape Colony through starvation; the untold burden of death and hunger, now smothers our national aspirations in a thick pall of smoke and feeds the expectations of imminent calamity, much like the millenarian fantasies of Nongqawuse and Mhlakaza.

In many ways, a lot has changed, but I argue that we are not in any novel terrain with emancipatory possibility, nor do the economic saboteurs carry with them the seeds of a ‘progressive advance’. Rather, we are seeing the ‘scorched earth’ tactics of a discredited political and commercial layer whose site of primitive accumulation were state institutions and formal and informal non-state networks configured around ‘economic rents’ linked to incumbency in the ANC and the government. This coercive basis of power, in the form of economic rents dished as ‘tribute’ to a neo-feudal set of power bases that coalesce into an accumulation network, is what is at stake. Or at least parts of it. 

Furthermore, if we read the Nongqawuse moment in the nineteenth century not as a deed of madness or superstition, but rather as an insurgent response by a class of commoners rejecting a political economy characterized by environmental devastation, colonial expansion and a rentier aristocratic layer – we arrive at different learnings from yesterday and today. 

3. Lungsickness and COVID 19 – Disease as a conduit for seismic economic and social shifts 

The Nongqawuse episode, was the intersection, as Jeff Peires argues in The Dead Will Arise, of economic and epidemiological issues that gave rise to the cattle killing movement. Peires argues that the cattle killing would not have been possible without the lungsickness pandemic of 1855. Similarly, the riots we are seeing would not have been possible without COVID 19. This alongside environmental decay and periodic attacks on the Xhosa food production system by colonial forces, as we saw in the day of Nongqawuse and her uncle Mhlakaza, unleashes the forces that make the ‘cataclysm’ so central to millenarian conceptions of social change 

Just like patrilineal links to igazi (royal blood) laid the basis (in cattle tribute and sanctioning of witch-hunts) for privileged economic status, we have seen since the discovery of gold and diamonds in South Africa a similar political economy through the state, by first the British, then the Afrikaner and then African nationalists. Proximity to those with the ability to make laws, issue legal tender, contracts and other authority vested in the sovereign, have been instruments weaponised in territorial and other wars of position pursued by successive administrations since the end of the wars of dispossession and the start of the ‘political stage’ of the struggle, from the early 20th century.

Across each phase, these have created the sub-altern forces at the base of their ultimate exit. 

4. What is different about now – Continuities and Ruptures?

Are we seeing, in the protests that the Western media has characterized as the ‘Zuma riots’ a ‘strike’ against the economic foundations of a failed political class, as we saw in the case of the aftermath of British scorched earth policy and the weakening coercive and political power of the Xhosa polity in the period preceding 1850? 

While disruptive, the recent events do not present a clear ‘war of position’ as part of an emancipatory or progressive politics as Ayanda Kota of Makhanda’s Unemployed Peoples Movement argued. Rather, it reinforces the links between, as Offenburger (2009), ‘natural disasters, epidemics and millenarian movements’. I argue that the contemporary riotous moment presents an interface between these factors, overlaid on a social contract whose economic and cultural base, is in urgent need of ‘renegotiation’ or renewed contestation or conflict. This is not to suggest that the political class ‘is not in crisis’ (which might be trite), but rather the envisaged disruptive and chaotic ‘resolution’ of the current crisis, implied by the carnage, carries little of the seeds of progressive advance. 

Yet in many ways, what we see is the same context as the Nongqawuse moment; 

As we showed above, while the historic interpretations of the millenarian cattle killing movement in the Eastern Cape differ on what ‘caused’ it, they are unanimous on the outcomes – death, hunger, desperation and fanaticism. We are in the same moment now. We debate the causes online and offline, of the riots; but are in chorus about its implications – food, fuel and other shortages that will reproduce the same death, hunger, desperation and fanaticism in Southern Africa. 

Furthermore, much like the aristocratic layer belatedly joined the cattle killing movement in its own existential defence (irrespective of its immediate economic interest); we will see similar ambivalent responses from contemporary political and economic elites. For instance even CEOs and the oft-violent taxi associations will now speak in respect of law and order and of a ‘basic income grant’ as a conduit to some peace and stability in defence of key sites of consumption. While for instance, the taxi industry elsewhere resolves their conflicts with violence. History teaches us that principle is malleable and can be bent to the cold facts of ‘economic interests’ in moments of crisis. It is in defence of these ‘economic interests’, primarily within and on the margins of the state, that an informal political-economic system holds us to ransom.

Yet that does not fully explain it. Rather, what might, is a consideration of the structural limits reached by the informal political-economic system built in successive waves since 1994. This system has led to the emergence of alternative and informal ‘black business’ groupings, engaging in a distributional contest outside of traditional BEE, affirmative action and processes and institutions aimed at mediating the South African paradox. What it suggests, as Fanon (1961) argues, is the challenges faced by an ‘economic programme’ that has failed to develop an authoritative ‘doctrine concerning the division of wealth and social relations’; 

‘There must be an economic programme; there must also be a doctrine concerning the division of wealth and social relations. In fact, there must be an idea of (wo)man and of the future of humanity; that is to say that no demagogic formula and no collusion with the former occupying power can take the place of a programme. The new peoples, unawakened at first but soon becoming more and more clear-minded, will make strong demands for this programme’- Fanon, Pitfalls of National Consciousness 

It is clear that the people have and continue to make strong demands for the type of  economic programme that resolved the ‘historic injustice’ that a young Thabo Mbeki spoke of in an seminar Ottawa in 1978. Yet it seems we are yet to develop a socially hegemonic and ideationally authoritative approach to the ‘division of wealth and social relations’. This explains why, even the redistributive programmes of the democratic state are open to ‘capture’ by narrow and opportunistic interests, who as Fanon says, are not interested in getting our people into ‘enlightened and fruitful work’ on a vast scale. These interests express themselves as much in how financialization steals the ‘lean spoils’ of the poor in their SASSA accounts or how informal networks capture procurement at municipal level. 

Narrow formulations and interpretations in the post-Apartheid era, of ‘redistribution and redress’ interventions, such as the ‘Delangokubona’ phenomenon, reflect the despondency with the project that collapses the resolution of the ‘national question’ with the creation of a patriotic commercial elite from the ranks of the oppressed. The implicit ‘trickle-down’ assumption of this, and the scores it excluded from ‘participation’ have come to collect on the unfulfilled promises, and in many ways these frustrations have found expression in informal politico-economic networks of accumulation that are in constant flux and are far from hegemonic, but are contested in different spaces, be it in state owned entities, municipalities and community trusts. 

It is this layer (or elements of it to some degree), that has laid siege to the ‘peace’ – how else can we explain the current moment? In that way, what we have characterized as a failed  insurrection, is fundamentally political. Insofar as it is about ‘power’ – a battle of succession and power over the political stewardship of the minerals-energy-finance complex, under very specific conditions. 

There is also a sense that there has been an ‘apparent disruption’ of the accumulation path of these informal political-economic networks. Either through the outcome of the Nasrec conference or the entryism of mainstream white industry into ‘our communities’ through malls, mines and other forays into the Native Reserve by the post-Apartheid commercial elite. In such a context, violence presents a viable form of political entrepreneurship – an avenue towards a ‘renegotiation’ over the ashes of the old ‘contract’. 

We are yet to see what the basis and even the dramatis personae of that negotiation will be, but that it will happen, will be determined by the potential for future violence disruption. That potential is not an ‘academic’ curiosity in a context of food and fuel lines triggered by supply chain disruptions. 

5. The role of the fratricidal contests in the ANC Speeding up a political cataclysm?

The looting at retail level, could easily be articulated within the logic of the crisis of social reproduction at a local level.  One is unconditionally sympathetic to the attraction and excitement of a consumptive frenzy in a context of deep hunger. However, the shift to warehouses, ports and upstream levels of the value chain breaks this relational chain because of the embedded interests of capital accumulation by a particular constellation of forces – from Afrophobic aspirant entrepreneurs to warlords turned tenderpreneurs displaced from local procurement and other ‘rent distribution’ networks. 

Further, the recent tactical choices of this layer; attacking distribution centres and water treatment plants are not entirely unrelated to the closure of roads and burning of trucks earlier. It is not the poor clamouring for foodstuffs in a lockdown that we need to train our sights on, but rather the insidious role of sections of the aspirant capitalist class that uses the looting of the poor as a convenient ruse to conceal the interests of those displaced or undertaking low intensity conflicts at the high table.

These contests create the conditions for an ongoing social crisis that morphs into a crisis characterized by widespread hunger and shortage of goods.  A typical tactic to achieve a shift in the political musical chairs. It is the scorched earth policy of the latter day conquistadors.  If you can loot a container at a port, there is seemingly little you cannot do. That this type of activity seems syndicated (with getaway cars in tow) shows the levels of planning and sophistication concealed by the chaotic scenes in the malls that law enforcement and the media focused on.

Yet the real story, it seems is in the targeting of ‘network industries’ (roads, rail, telecoms networks and community-level broadcasters). Even these attacks are not, in space and time, confined to disaffection about the incarceration of Zuma but are at once continuing within an environment of generalized chaos; something that began much earlier. For instance the destabilization and pilfering of our rail infrastructure (in a context of high copper prices), predates the Zuma riots, so does the Afrophobic mobilization targeting migrant petty traders and truck drivers in KwaZulu Natal. The more recent attacks on highways, ports, distribution hubs, water works and manufacturing hubs, highlight the envisaged scope of this systemic assault. The seemingly spontaneous attacks on retail centres are a generalised mass chaos that makes for a convenient decoy for the real ‘economic targets’. Why?

Because there is a dialectic of the fleeting abundance of loot and the long queues of shortages of basic foodstuffs that we have already started to see. The retail looter of today is the hungry citizen tomorrow, making grounds for further social unrest. Rather than a Mlanjeni type popular assault on the credibility of the political class, this is a much narrower display of fratricidal conflict inside the ANC, spilling over into the fortunes of all South Africans. It is a Nongqawuse-type of millenarian project, that would rather create the basis of a cataclysmic event in pursuit of a self-fulfilling prophesy, than have it visited upon us by fate. 

It is precisely the fratricidal conflict within the ANC, that lays the basis for the negative spill overs of these contests over power, not for any ideological reason or behind a coherent emancipatory programme, but rather ostensibly in defence of an incumbent political and commercial elite under threat, and a mass base triggered to agitation by neoliberal restructuring, the commodification of ‘public goods’ and belatedly a production and supply crisis that can be expected to precipitate insolent hunger. It is an outcome, one argues of the limitations of an ‘economic programme’ and its view on division of wealth and social relations as Fanon suggests; and the voracious contests for the lean spoils of national wealth. 

These contests as we have seen have a clear ‘division of labour’ and distributional implications. 

6. The division of labour in the riots who plays what role?

The accessible and camera-friendly poor residents operate at the level of ‘looting’ out of ‘need’ or narrow yet limited wants. Limited to what you can carry in one risky trip into the inferno. Taking foodstuffs, necessities and electronics for consumption or resale for cash, rather than for capital accumulation. While the well-heeled and connected position themselves for the high value loot; their real tactic is the structural sabotage of water treatment plants, invasion of containers, theft of arms, burning of trucks and occupation of national arterial roads critical to trade and commerce in the Region. 

While these activities may be swept up in the palpable chaos and excitement of the ‘loot’. Their more invisible and insidious features are the long wearing down of not only institutions, but chronic weathering and theft of our network industries, especially passenger and freight rail and the latest siege laid on economic infrastructure in the port city of eThekwini. Further, as can be expected in South Africa, the agent provocateurs ‘fumble for matches’ as Nontsizi Mgqwetho suggests, to light up long simmering tensions among the working class African and Indian communities in KwaZulu Natal. Further, these tensions as the call for solidarity by Abahlali baseMjondolo displayed, also play into the tribalist mobilizations against AmaMpondo and other isiXhosa speaking groups in KwaZulu Natal, many of whom are relatively overrepresented in the informal settlements of that province. It is these ethnic witch hunts that have followed the unrest that indicate the existing challenges around the national question. Mzala Nxumalo, reminds us that the ‘aim of our revolution’ is not only to end inequality between Black and White ‘nations’ in South Africa, but also ‘the inequality (no doubt driven by material disparities) between African, Indian and Coloured nationalities’; and through the resolution of these national inequalities and their attendant hostilities; build a single South African nation (Nxumalo, 1984). 

What we learn from Mzala in this case, is that the overspill of these hostilities is an outcome of the  pedestrian pace of our ‘economic programme’ to create tenable ‘social relations’ among the ‘stratified’ nations that economic Apartheid continues to divide. It is this ‘national sense of grievance’ as Oliver Tambo said, that must be harnessed towards destroying existing social and economic relationships that reproduce anti-black racism, lumpen-patriarchy and the super-exploitation of many working people. As ‘Ginyibhulu Xhakalegusha’ suggested in the African Communist in 1979, as far as the national question is concerned, ‘we are concentrating on the development of the most oppressed and raising their level to that of the privileged national groups’. The task remains that of building a nation from the diverse ethnic, racial, linguistic and cultural groups, who share a common territory, as Pallo Jordan suggested. 

That we are faced with tribalism and ‘national hostility’ as we see in KZN, is indicative of the fact that, that task remains incomplete.

These subjective challenges have been complemented by the contemporaneous crisis of austerity and long term de-capacitation of the public service, making it difficult near impossible to marshal a state-led response to this crisis. 

7. Confronting Austerity   the basis of the social resolution of the crisis ?

Many have rightly suggested that this crisis goes further than just a ‘crime issue’, but is a unsettling mixture of security, socio-economic and reproductive crises, that have been sparked and lit by a match of discontent around the incarceration of Jacob Zuma. Knowing South Africa, it could have been anything else more mundane or significant. The ‘ticking time’ bomb, has been ticking for long, and as Edward Zuma might suggest, we might even if we want to ‘untick it’, be unable to. 

What has maybe served as the paraffin or petrol of this Molotov cocktail might not solely be the chronic shock the chaos has had on the supply lines and broader economy, but the more ‘chronic stress’ visited on poor households, communities, students and workers by an aggressive programme of fiscal consolidation that has to be correctly characterized as ‘austerity’. The pursuit of a primary budget surplus in the middle of a once-in-a-century epidemiological crisis, is misplaced and as we are seeing will come at significant social cost. 

In the area of policing, which includes visible policing, detective services and crime intelligence among its programmes, there had been, prior to COVID -19, a 4.8% rise in the policing budget between 2017 and 2020, with a now mooted -0.8% average growth rate between 2021 and 2024. The burden of this adjustment, falls on visible policing (affecting the reporting of crimes against women and children and other contact crimes) which is set to decline by -2.2% and constitutes more than half of the policing budget. This alongside, the major backlogs in forensic and other investigative elements of the work of law enforcement,  are set to fall disproportionately on poorer communities who cannot opt for private security and enforcement. 

Within the ambit of the household, the social development budget vote has actually experienced reversals. Average annual growth in spend on social assistance programmes for the next three years is -2.2%. The child support grant declines by 3.2% (from R84bn in 2020/2021 to R73bn in 2021/2022 and then rises marginally to more than R77bn the following year). And there is a double-digit negative (-10.9%) medium-term growth rate for foster care grants. This path of public expenditure, has created the ‘shocks’ and ‘stresses’ at a household level, that form a constituent part of the reasons that account for the desperation and hunger we have seen on display in this riotous moment. That it happens as people are ‘locked’ into their dense, multi-generational homes with no access to informal livelihood paths, makes for a ‘perfect storm’

The burden of fiscal consolidation has fallen on the main spending areas that target poor and low-income households — the kind of spending that not only targets immediate consumption but also facilitates intergenerational social mobility. This, in a crisis of demand in the most unequal society in the world, implies an unequal sharing of the burdens of subjective maladministration and the objective features of the epidemiological crisis.

8. Concluding RemarksPossibilities for a progressive advance? 

The inequitable distribution of the burdens brought about by epidemiological, economic and other crises (including of our own subjective weaknesses) lead to ‘morbid symptoms’ associated with the social changes that austerity will unlock. These include, but are not limited to, the political, social and economic activities that wither down democratic institutions, critical infrastructure and subvert local expressions of power in pursuit of fratricidal fantasy.

Moreover, these ‘symptoms’ may include the weakening credibility and moral authority of the ANC as a force central in the pursuit of a national democratic society. The events in the middle of July 2021 are not only an onslaught on our productive forces (by the alienated, hungry and the more sinister) but are also an opportunity to reconsider in this moment of renewal, the commitment of progressive forces across our society, to a society where one’s ability to survive and raise their children in conditions of peace, is not reliant on market forces alone. Such a re-affirmation of the responsibility of the state to recognize the duty and right of all to work and draw unemployment benefits; and the obligations in the Freedom Charter, to care ‘for the aged, the orphans, the disabled and the sick’, is in line with the most progressive and social democratic of our traditions. 

Further, there is a duty and responsibility on all of us (least of all those we elect to make laws) to hold the executive to account, to our Constitutional ‘floor’ of protections, to account for reductions in public expenditure that reverses the progressive realization of key rights or what the National Development Plan sees a ‘social floor’ or minimum social protection and support level, below which no citizen or household should fall. There needs to be negotiation and agreement on what this means in an economy that can no longer afford to ignore this. It is not a matter of returning to countercyclical policy when we improve growth or revenue collection, the ‘clock cannot be unticked’ nor can this issue be delayed any further. 

We must speak of these things. Because it us the youth, who are without work. Without training. Without prospects. It is us, who Dora Tamana encouraged to speak. Telling us to speak up. Speak up, for it is us, who run like the chickens from the numerous vultures who make ever audacious claims to the lean spoils of national wealth that Fanon spoke of. As we do so, we must admit our mistakes, and not tear ourselves apart as Tambo told us. Even in the difficult and messy tasks of renewal that confront us, we must never be in doubt, that the people’s cause shall triumph. 

Ayabonga is a Johannesburg based development economist, columnist, broadcaster and activist. He is Managing Director of Xesibe Holdings (Pty) Ltd, a platform involved in advisory, facilitation and content development across a wide range of fields. He hosts MetroFMTalk on MetroFM and writes a regular column for the Business Day. He has worked as Economic Justice Manager at Oxfam South Africa (OZA) working on policy advocacy and research. He has also worked as an Associate Consultant at Dalberg Global Development Advisors, a global development strategy consulting and policy advisory firm. 

He has experience in economic research, policy and supply chain analysis, labour markets, advocacy and development program design. He has taken part in a wide range of research, advisory and policy engagements on development issues in agriculture, inequality, urban design, and labour market policy.

Ayabonga sat on the National Minimum Wage Advisory Panel appointed by the Deputy President and Nedlac in 2016, which advised on the R20/hour proposal and the VAT zero-rating review panel, tasked by the Minister of Finance in 2018, to consider the expansion of the list of food and non-food items exempted from value added tax. Ayabonga is a member of the Presidential Economic Advisory Council, chaired by President Cyril Ramaphosa. 

He is a Sessional Lecturer at the School of Economic and Business Sciences at Wits University and holds an M. Com (Cum Laude) in Development Theory and Policy from Wits.  


Fanon, Frantz (1961) Pitfalls of National Consciousness in The Wretched of the Earth. Published by Grove Weidenfeld A division of Grove Press, Inc. 841 Broadway New York, NY 10003-4793 

Gramsci, Antonio, (1971). Selections from the prison notebooks of Antonio Gramsci. New York, International Publishers

National Treasury (2021). The Budget Review 2021/22. Ministry of Finance. Tshwane. 

Nxumalo, Jabulani Nobleman (writing as Sisa Majola)(1984) ‘A tale of two nations’ – The Presentation of the National Question in South Africa. African Communist No.97, Second Quarter 1984. 

Opland, Jeff, (2007). Nation’s Bounty: The Xhosa Poetry of Nontsizi Mgqwetho. Wits University Press. Johannesburg 

Peires, Jeff, (1989). The Dead Will Arise : Nongqawuse and the Great Xhosa Cattle Killing Movement of 1856-7. Bloomington, Indiana University Press.

Stapleton, Timothy, (2016). Maqoma, The Legend of a great Xhosa warrior. Amava Heritage Publishing (Pty) Ltd 

Tamana, Dora (1981). I have seen the rays of our New South Africa rising. Published by the International Defense and Aid Fund for Southern Africa, 1981

Tambo, Oliver (1969) Political Report of the National Executive Committee to the Morogoro Consultative Conference of the African National Congress, Morogoro, Tanzania, 25 April – 1 May 1969

Xhakalegusha, Ginyibhulu (1979) National Question and Ethnic Processes. African Communist No.79, Fourth Quarter 1979.
Posted in Amandla

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *