• IS provokes sea-change

    It has been a grave mistake to defy both Russia and France, says Leopold Scholtz.

  • Nene's SAA nemesis

    No political figure seems to have the guts to speak out against Dudu Myeni, says Solly Moeng.

  • The mp3 revolution

    Ian Mann takes a look at the war between digital music and the compact disc.

All data is delayed
See More

Vavi: African leaders failing on economy

Nov 25 2011 11:41
Johannesburg -  Generations of African leaders have failed to transform the economies inherited from their colonial masters, Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi said on Friday.

"All our economies to this day remain dominated by the unprocessed natural resource sector, with little or no industrialisation," Vavi told African Union leaders at the International Trade Union Confederation congress in Boksburg.

"Some countries rely 90% on mineral exports," he said.

Vavi was concerned that colonialists were continuing to plunder Africa's mineral resources, decades after their political defeat.

He said the scramble for Africa’s resources by imperialist forces and their interference in the continent had to be confronted.

Africa had an abundance of natural resources, but remained the poorest continent in the world, Vavi said.

Income levels remained "terribly low", while income inequalities had remained "stubbornly high".

He blamed the mass poverty and food insecurity on a failed post-colonial political economy on the continent.

This was exacerbated by "a venal, corrupt and visionless leadership which cares little for people".

Vavi called for the renewal of the African trade union movement towards African emancipation, saying it was time for all workers to re-mobilise and fight for a new freedom not gained.

The scale of the "sham of independence" of the continent needed to be exposed, he said.

"For too long we have allowed the dependency syndrome whilst claiming to be liberated.

"Either we export our minerals to our colonial masters, or they control our finances, or both."

The continent had not industrialised or diversified its economies, and did not add value to its natural resources, said Vavi.

"We do not own our mines and we do not own our economies," he said.
zwelinzima vavi  |  cosatu


Read Fin24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Company Snapshot

We're talking about:


Marketing is a big concern in SA's small business community, followed by a lack of confidence and partnering with the wrong people, according to a survey.

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...

Voting Booth

The 25 basis points interest rate increase is:

Previous results · Suggest a vote