THE ANC Youth League’s call for the nationalisation of mines will be discussed at the ruling party’s policy conference later this year, the ANC said yesterday.
“In our discussion on matters of the economy, we can’t avoid the issue of nationalisation,” ANC spokesman Jackson Mthembu said. “But nationalisation is not the only issue, there are many other discussion documents.”
All discussion documents that would form part of the party’s national general council (NGC) agenda would be made public in September.
ANCYL president Julius Malema has repeatedly called for the nationalisation of the country’s mines, starting with its gold and platinum mines.
Although the government has distanced itself from the proposal, the Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu) has come out in support of the idea.
“ANCYL makes the valid point that nationalisation of the mines is particularly relevant in light of the global financial crisis and the massive job losses in the mining sector,” Cosatu spokesman Patrick Craven said.
Meanwhile, Mineral Resources Minister Susan Shabangu said nationalisation was not an option. “You can’t say nationalisation is strategic because it is about everything, and that’s not the route we’re taking.”
Shabangu said there was no harm in letting Malema “flex his muscles” by talking about nationalisation but insisted his pronouncements did not shape government policy.
Mthembu said the minister’s comments did not contradict the ANC’s position. “What she said does not mean we cannot discuss the issue.” – Sapa