Dr Michael Cardo MP, DA Shadow Minister for Employment and Labour – 21 July 2020
The Employment Equity (EE) Amendment Bill, which was gazetted yesterday, will have the effect of choking South Africa’s barely breathing economy in zealous pursuit of the ANC’s idea of “demographic representivity”.
The Democratic Alliance (DA) will oppose the bill tooth and nail.
The proposed changes empower the Minster of Employment and Labour to set numerical EE targets for any national economic sector. This confers upon the Minister a degree of coercive racial control that is completely incompatible with the principles of a market-based economy.
These numerical targets imposed by ministerial fiat are quotas in all but name, and the Minister has no business in ramming them down the throat of employers.
Instead of focusing on racial bean-counting, the government should worry more about growing the pool of skilled black professionals and developing a pipeline of promotion in the workplace.
Where the DA governs, we aim to create a solid skills pipeline, focusing on job-creating economic growth and supporting previously disadvantaged South Africans to participate in the economy.
The economy is already reeling after a decade of ANC corruption, policy incoherence and fiscal mismanagement. Covid-19 has added a heavy toll, with 3 million people having lost their jobs between February and April. The Employment Equity Amendment Bill will further stunt economic growth and suffocate the labour market.
The bill is a pernicious piece of social engineering and the DA will oppose it root and branch.