SARS war - the battle lines have been drawn in public. And its a good thing.

Daniel Silke, Political Analyst and Director of Political Futures Consultancy says yes.

If you take the view that a crisis can have a positive outcome, when your back is against the wall, when the issues are flushed out into the open rather than being obfuscated behind closed doors, then yes one could see this as positive.

Daniel Silke, Political Futures Consultancy

Without SARS there is no source of revenue for government to do the work it must do - especially for the poor.

SARS is fundamental to to economy. 400 billion rand alone is collected in personal income taxes. It is the one efficient government agency, and without it the country would come to a stop.

Daniel Silke, Political Futures Consultancy

That's really one of my critical points about the whole episode. Its philosophical. SARS is critical to us as a functioning economy and keeping it beyond reproach reflects on our well being collectively as a nation.

Daniel Silke, Political Futures Consultancy

Silke says the danger is when we see agencies of the state becoming politicised.

Given the statements of Pravin Gordhan, it would seem that his view is that there is some sort of proxy war being fought between those who want to apply ethical policies to finance in South Africa and those perhaps who could broadly speaking be called crony capitalists - those who use patronage to get further.

Daniel Silke, Political Futures Consultancy

But it can have a positive spin off says Silke.

In times of crisis as long as the issues are resolved in a positive way, we can in fact take some heart from the stand that Pravin Gordhan has taken over the past few months.

Daniel Silke, Political Futures Consultancy

It has got to be flushed out and it has got to be flushed out fast because we know the consequences - a ratings agencies downgrade, a higher cost of capital, a higher inflation rate and a weaker rand. I think the penny has dropped in government - or at least in parts of government - that something needs to be done. But its touch and go to see which horse wins.

Daniel Silke, Political Futures Consultancy

This article first appeared on 702 : SARS war - the battle lines have been drawn in public. And its a good thing.


CapeTalk welcomes all comments that are constructive, contribute to discussions in a meaningful manner and take stories forward.

However, we will NOT condone the following:

  • Racism (including offensive comments based on ethnicity and nationality)
  • Sexism
  • Homophobia
  • Religious intolerance
  • Cyber bullying
  • Hate speech
  • Derogatory language
  • Comments inciting violence.

We ask that your comments remain relevant to the articles they appear on and do not include general banter or conversation as this dilutes the effectiveness of the comments section.

We strive to make the CapeTalk community a safe and welcoming space for all.

CapeTalk reserves the right to: 1) remove any comments that do not follow the above guidelines; and, 2) ban users who repeatedly infringe the rules.

Should you find any comments upsetting or offensive you can also flag them and we will assess it against our guidelines.

CapeTalk is constantly reviewing its comments policy in order to create an environment conducive to constructive conversations.

Read More
‘Emmerson Mnangagwa has a terrible reputation for brutality’

‘Emmerson Mnangagwa has a terrible reputation for brutality’

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Trevor Ncube, Publisher at Alpha Media.

I met Tony Gupta and Salim Essa at Minister Lynne Brown’s home - Zola Tsotsi

I met Tony Gupta and Salim Essa at Minister Lynne Brown’s home - Zola Tsotsi

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews EWN reporter Rahima Essop about how Dudu Myeni got involved in Eskom.

Cape Town – facing worst drought in 100 years – braces for bumper tourist season

Cape Town – facing worst drought in 100 years – braces for bumper tourist season

Cape Town Tourism CEO Enver Duminy on what his organisation is doing to help the tourism industry through the drought.

Meet Bongumusa Makhathini, Chairperson of the Board that has to save the SABC

Meet Bongumusa Makhathini, Chairperson of the Board that has to save the SABC

The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviews Makhathini for his “ShapeShifter” feature.

Robots are coming! They're running, jumping and doing the backflip to get here

Robots are coming! They're running, jumping and doing the backflip to get here

A robot doing a single task is not new. The kind that can do tasks on their own? That can be a bit more scary.

Jubilant Zimbabweans ‘crying and hugging’ as Robert Mugabe resigns

Jubilant Zimbabweans ‘crying and hugging’ as Robert Mugabe resigns

There’s an outpouring of emotion on the streets of Harare. Bruce Whitfield interviews Rashweat Mukundu.

Popular articles
Zim ministers snub Mugabe's cabinet meeting call

Zim ministers snub Mugabe's cabinet meeting call

Regional Co-Ordinator at Crisis Zimbabwe Coalition, Joy Mabenge says the keys to Mugabe's impeachment are turning very fast.

Tender irregularities plague City of Cape Town

Tender irregularities plague City of Cape Town

Allegations point to irregularities in the tender processes where some bidders were preferred by the City's senior executives.

What Shoprite, Checkers, Pick n Pay and Makro will offer on Black Friday

What Shoprite, Checkers, Pick n Pay and Makro will offer on Black Friday

Up for a Springboks level scrum? Instructions on how to ensure you get the deals in your inbox the moment they become known...

I didn't believe that he was ever going to step down - JJ Cornish

I didn't believe that he was ever going to step down - JJ Cornish

EWN Africa Correspondent, JJ Cornish describes Mugabe's Sunday evening speech as a humiliating downturn for the Zim president.