In a statement issued by the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI) today, CEO Alan Mukoki says that the 2019 general elections for both the national and provincial legislators come at a time “when there are so many things to talk about, key among them being the slow pace of growth of the South African economy.”
He points out that slow economic growth stifles creation of much needed jobs, among many other adverse consequences.
“One of the important things worth mentioning is the peaceful and cordial manner that the contesting political parties and their supporters have conducted themselves in their campaigns for votes. Despite robust debates, aggressive campaigning and sharp differences on many political and other points, the parties have been civil to one another. This tolerance of differences of political views, opinions and beliefs, is indicative of the high state of maturity, discipline and respect for democratic and constitutional rights among parties and is most welcome and encouraging.”
Mukoki states that the registration of more than 40 political parties to contest the elections is landmark and is testimony to the robustness and vitality of the South African democratic state. “SACCI wishes all the contesting parties good luck ahead.”
He adds that the peaceful election campaign environment has enabled all parties contesting the elections to clearly and fairly state their manifestos and campaigns to voters and the public. “This in itself is good for business and investor confidence as one of the key elements in a constitutional democracy where free and fair elections are held.”
Almost all the contesting political parties have elevated the issue of economic growth, job creation, crime, fixing the issue of social injustice and inequality at the centre of their political promises and Mukoki is of the opinion that this bodes well for the future of the democratic state, notwithstanding who the winners will be.
“Having understood the manifestos and campaigns of the many political parties, we notice that most have policies geared to drive economic growth. One can conclude that South Africans are united in their quest for policy certainty around the mentioned common elements.
“The SACCI is of the view that the challenge at hand is not so much policy uncertainty as many have said, but the failure to implement already adopted policies.”
The SACCI wishes South Africans a safe peaceful voting day, as they exercise their constitutional rights to choose their preferred political leaders through a secret ballot.