Government strategy has created a tiny black elite! Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) favours rampant crony capitalism! BEE is just corporate trickle down to the black middle class! Black empowerment is no more broad-based than Jacob Zuma's bank balance! Such complaints form the backdrop to much discussion about BEE, the left blaming neo-liberal capitalism, the right condemning ANC misrule.
Thabo Mbeki aspires to crafting a "developmental state" capable of directing the economy on to a path of innovation, sustainable growth, redistribution and poverty reduction. Adopted as a goal in part because the level of private investment has been disappointing, the aspiration is otherwise built on the ANC's admiration for the East and South-East Asian economies, where rapid economic growth over the past three decades has been guided by activist states.
After Lesotho's last election opposition supporters rejected the outcome, brought the government to its knees and torched much of Maseru. Is there a risk of similar upheavals when the Basotho go to the polls on May 25?