Ekurhuleni Mayor Mzwandile Masina wants South Africa to close its Durban port to compel “international manufacturing” to “descend to South Africa.”
Masina made the call in a tweet he posted on Sunday, arguing that this would grant South Africa “full independence from Western imperialists.”
“Democracy is nice and good, but to get our full independence from Western Imperialists we must close down the Durban Harbor so that no Minerals leave this country. In that way, International Manufacturing will descend to SA since we hold 90% of platinum, which the Works so need [sic],” he wrote.
Not surprisingly, the startling tweet has triggered intense debate on social media, racking up more than 800 replies so far.
Some Twitter users, like Masoga Kekana, agreed with Masina. He wrote, “Africa needs to stand firm and have a mineral export pause for the month.
“Can’t have a continent with the GDP smaller than Silicon Valley yet it would be close to nothing without the minerals here. Renegotiate the deals, ensure some finished goods are made here!!”
@Rebaone59275709 added, “I agree with you man, but why don’t you take that to your ANC meetings formally and lobby people in your corrupt organisation to support this so it can be done rather than being talked about?”
However, others slammed Masina’s idea. @mike_superb replied, “When you read things like this written by one of our mayors, then you can understand why our economy is shrinking and unemployment is growing. This is the quality of leadership in SA. He makes Zuma look clever.”
“Actually I was concerned the tweet exposes deep/scary ignorance by someone who served in DTI as a Deputy Minister,” wrote @mokabah.
Masina’s anti-WMC views
Masina is known as an ardent critic of “white monopoly capitalism” (WMC) and supporter of the radical economic transition (RET) grouping in the African National Congress (ANC).
He made headlines in the run-up to ANC’s 54th national conference in 2017 when he declared he won’t serve under the leadership of Cyril Ramaphosa should he win.
News24 reported at the time that Masina said if Ramaphosa won, “white people will lead South Africa.” However, he didn’t make good on this threat to resign as Ekurhuleni Mayor after Ramaphosa won.
More recently, he publicly criticised Ramaphosa’s decision to reappoint Pravin Gordhan to the Cabinet.
In a News24 article he penned in August, Masina also criticised those who defended Ramaphosa’s CR17 campaign donations.
“We cannot and must never normalise a culture where we defend individuals who commit questionable acts in their personal capacities, and then want to claim that such defence is necessary or even revolutionary,” he wrote.