July 2019 – September 2019
The FMF’s projects for 2019 include: Consumer Rights, Economic Freedom/Growth, Energy, Financial Sector, Healthcare, Labour / Jobs Creation, Land Reform / Property Rights (with a particular focus on #EWC – Expropriation Without Compensation), Rule of Law, Transformation as well as ad hoc issues as they arise.
The FMF works hard to increase its media coverage and reach as wide an audience as possible with its message about the benefits of economic freedom, growth and the rule of law.
386 ARTICLES that quote or mention the FMF or originate from interviews or media releases or were written specifically for the media or the FMF’s website were published this quarter. See projects below for more information.
INTERVIEWS on radio and TV number 107 this quarter.
Ad hoc releases mean FMF distributed 8 MEDIA RELEASES this quarter. See projects below for more information.
FMF is conscious of the power of SOCIAL MEDIA and we are working hard to reach more people via our website, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube offerings.
In the right-hand column, the FMF’s website has three “windows” to our social media making it easier for our members and website visitors to access…
Twitter: 5,173 followers
Facebook: 5,331 likes
YouTube: 434 videos; 3,048 subscribers; 336,549 views
FMF researchers Martin van Staden, Mpiyakhe Dhlamini, and Chris Hattingh recently begun recording weekly podcasts, on a wide range of topics. In addition to the weekly ‘Free Marketeers’ podcast which features all three of them discussing topics together, they also irregularly do weekly podcasts on topics of their own choosing. All podcasts can be found on the FMF’s YouTube channel.
A few of their podcasts:
- Tax collection nosedive and Eskom 'can't afford' layoffs – 769 views
- Unaccountable regulators threaten economic freedom – 270 views
- Possible tax revolt and new SAA turnaround plan – 5,389 views
- NHI disaster, SOE bailouts, and Reserve Bank – 1,018 views
- The importance of economic freedom to South Africa's economy – 203 views
New Solution video series
Watch these two golden oldies recently digitised and uploaded to our YouTube channel:
South Africa: The solution
A constitution worth fighting for
FMF history series
We have begun the mammoth task of unearthing and presenting our 43-year history.
If you would like to know more, why not begin by dipping into our under-construction timeline.
We have digitised our photographs and added them to our website beginning with our 1977 (re)inauguration – see galleries.
We have digitised ancient, dusty VHS tapes and uploaded them to our YouTube channel here. A few noteworthy standouts include Leon Louw’s presentations, a prelude to the writing of South African: The Solution. There are 6 videos in this 1985 series beginning with HISTORY SERIES South Africa: The Solution 1 of 6. See also our 1986 privatisation conference: HISTORY SERIES Privatisation conference 1986 1 of 3 and our 1989 consumer conference: HISTORY SERIES Consumer power conference 1989 1 of 5.
If you have any photographs or tales from FMF’s past, we would welcome you sharing them with us.
Previous cartoons published by FMF can be viewed here.
PROJECTS (note: all articles, media releases and submissions are available on the FMF website)
Economic Freedom / Growth
The FMF is a co-publisher of the Economic Freedom of the World (EFW) index with Canadian based think tank Fraser Institute. The index, published annually, measures the degree to which the policies and institutions of countries are supportive of economic freedom. The foundations of economic freedom are personal choice, voluntary exchange, freedom to compete and security of privately owned property. The findings in the report unambiguously support the fact that economic freedom is strongly related to prosperity and growth; countries that are economically free tend to grow faster and be more prosperous.
- Call for higher taxes is misguided by James Peron
- Smoke and mirrors on spectrum by Chris Hattingh
- How Rwanda surpassed SA: The importance of economic freedom by Mpiyakhe Dhlamini
- Increase poverty alleviation through maximising trade by Chris Hattingh
- Impartial courts for economic prosperity by Mpiyakhe Dhlamini
- Education entrepreneurs could upgrade South Africa’s schooling by Eustace Davie
- The importance of letting companies (like SOEs) fail by Mpiyakhe Dhlamini
- Limits to economy a danger to political freedom by Brian Kantor
- Mboweni sends the right signal by Chris Hattingh
- Africa’s path to prosperity lies in the free market by Chris Hattingh
- We need to stop listening to the trade unions by Martin van Staden
- How limits to economic freedom are behind SA’s failures by Richard J. Grant
- Letter: Read the signs by Neil Emerick
- Moody's axe will fall - unless we change course now by Chris Hattingh
- State-owned airline SA Express breaks the law in refusing to answer FMF PAIA request
- Every SA Express passenger is subsidised R3,850 (R7,700 return) by the poor
- Did SA Express finally face financial reality or did government blink?
- South Africa falls 54 places in World Freedom Index in just 19 years
- TANSTAAFL: Rugby World Cup is the latest No Free Lunch example
- Are ACSA Board directors liable under the Companies Act 2011?
Economic Freedom of the World Report Audit
From 17-19 July, the FMF hosted a conference on the EFW Report, and the Report’s data’s implications for South Africa. Five speakers spoke on the five different sections of the report. Fred McMahon, Resident Fellow at the Fraser Institute (which published the annual EFW Report), facilitated the discussion sessions. The event was very well attended, with both civil society and government represented.
The five presentations can be viewed at the links below.
- Economic Freedom of the World Audit – Size of Government – Brian Kantor
- Economic Freedom of the World Audit – Sound Money – Russell Lamberti
- Economic Freedom of the World Audit – Regulation – Professor Robert Vivian
- Economic Freedom of the World Audit – Freedom to Trade – Bonang Mohale
- Economic Freedom of the World Audit – Legal System and Property Rights – Rex van Schalkwyk
On 12 September, Neil Emerick presented Economic Freedom of the World Report 2019. In this presentation, Neil Emerick presents the latest edition of the EFW Report and discusses South Africa's ranking along with the implications of less economic freedom for the people of SA.
You can watch Neil’s presentation here.
On 22 and 23 August, the FMF participated in the 2019 Africa Liberty Forum in Nairobi, Kenya. The forum was co-hosted by the Atlas Network and African Students For Liberty. FMF Project Manager, Chris Hattingh, participated in a weeklong training programme that preceded the forum. Board member, Phumlani M Majozi, presented on the developing situation in South Africa and how to create a credible voice for liberty in media. Executive Director, Leon Louw, provided his insights into constitutionalism and the Rule of Law, and their relevance to human rights. Director, Temba A Nolutshungu, was asked to speak about corruption and how to fight it through adherence to the tenets of the Rule of Law. Head of Legal Policy, Martin van Staden, presented on how to be an effective advocate for liberty online. Board member, Unathi Kwaza, also attended the proceedings.
On 18 September, Chris Hattingh spoke at an event at Maroela Media. Chris briefed the Maroela team on the wide range of work in which the FMF engages, and presented the free market view on a couple of the biggest issues facing South Africa in 2019.
- Submission on Tourism Amendment Bill
The purpose of the FMF’s Finance Policy Unit is to promote the application of free market principles to financial markets. Current actions continue to focus on the “twin peaks” regulation of which the Financial Sector Regulation (FSR) Act is the architecture, and the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services (FAIS) Act.
- Where can we store our value? by Rob Price
- The simple reason why a state bank is unnecessary by Mpiyakhe Dhlamini
Video on Twin Peaks
Some years ago, the Financial Services Board (FSB) announced that it had “deregistered” over 15,900 financial service providers. The FSB did not specify race, but how much are you willing to bet that many of those deregistered were emerging black brokers and advisors? Now “Twin Peaks” (or Financial Sector Regulation Act) will further undermine transformation in South Africa. In addition, it will create an enormous bureaucracy with reams of red tape. It will cost an estimated R4,8 BILLION per year, every year, which is equivalent to 500,000 RDP houses or 5,000 new clinics per year, every year. Understanding the law and that it has zero measurable benefits is crucial.
The FMF’s Twin Peaks video can be viewed here.
The FMF’s Health Policy Unit (HPU) contends and persistently provides evidence that in all sectors of the economy, free, open markets with competitive private enterprises serve consumer needs best. For the indigent, it would be better for government to purchase higher quality healthcare at a lower cost from the private sector than to provide the service itself. The HPU argues that patients are harmed when government dictates to healthcare providers, pharmaceutical companies and other firms in the healthcare industry how to manage their affairs, or at what prices they should sell their products and services. The HPU’s mission is to increase access to high quality healthcare for all South Africans.
FMF solutions to healthcare for the indigent
The FMF’s alternative solutions to improved health care for all include:
- Privatising the provision of health care – via giveaways of public hospitals to those who work in them or sales to those who wish to buy them
- Financing health care for the poor – preferably via state-sponsored vouchers, which the indigent can spend where they choose
- Encouraging more private hospitals by deregulating the industry and eliminating Certificates of Need
- Reducing prices and increasing health care quality through increased competition
- Training more doctors and nurses (the number of doctors is limited to 1,300 a year; this number has remained the same since the 1970s despite increases in the population and the disease burden)
- Allowing the private sector to train doctors and nurses
- Encouraging income-producing medical tourism
- Retaining skilled South Africans and attracting others by removing the limit on skilled foreign doctors
- Deregulating medical schemes so they can offer their clients exactly what they want
- Deregulating pharmacies
- Removing price controls, which send mixed messages to the industry
- Speeding up registration of clinical trials
- Giving those who pay for their own health care a tax deduction
- Allowing low cost insurance options
- Regulator’s tardiness in approving medicines is hurting the industry and patients by Jasson Urbach
- State takeover of academic hospitals is not the answer by Dr Johann Serfontein
- NHI will be a disaster on many fronts by Jasson Urbach
- Mkhize clings to NHI while public patients suffer neglect and incompetence by Michael Settas
- How the government is rolling the dice on everyone’s health by Dr Johann Serfontein
- National Health Insurance Bill a perfect example of state overreach by Dr Johann Serfontein
- Resist the ‘healthpas’ threat to our constitutional rights by Martin van Staden
- The government doesn’t own you: The immoral premise of the NHI by Mpiyakhe Dhlamini
- Pause the NHI, fix the public health sector first by Michael Settas
- Letter: Ideologically opposed to the NHI, but knowing why by Chris Hattingh
- Low-cost healthcare solutions are vital to hit sustainable development goals by Jasson Urbach
- The NHI wrecking ball entrenches SA’s terminal illness
Labour / Jobs Creation
South Africa has an unacceptably high and rising level of unemployment. For government to achieve its stated objective of reducing unemployment and stimulating growth, it must urgently address labour market policies and laws that exacerbate unemployment. A significant part of our current work involves educating the public about the consequences of adopting a National Minimum Wage (NMW). There are currently an estimated 9.4 million unemployed – a NMW will just make it that much harder for these individuals to climb onto the first rung of the economic ladder.
- First time in history – more than 10 million unemployed by Chris Hattingh
- Freer markets generate prosperity, especially for the poor by Martin van Staden
On 27 August, Eustace Davie presented Mass unemployment - the consequence of brutality masquerading as compassion. FMF director Eustace Davie discusses the latest unemployment numbers in South Africa. With over 10 million people unemployed the time has come for the government to cut regulations, such as the National Minimum Wage, which discriminate against unemployed people.
You can watch Eustace’s presentation here.
FMF believes that secure property rights represent one of the most important requirements for the protection of both economic freedom and civil liberties. FMF is very concerned about recent proposals to amend the property rights clause in the Constitution. FMF proposes that:
- All black occupied council-owned urban plots be converted to full ownership (“freehold”) – FMF is working with Ngwathe municipality (Parys, Free State) to convert 20,000 plots to full freehold.
- Superfluous government land be redistributed to the victims of apartheid as a substantial once-off compensation.
- Pre-emptive clauses be removed from existing and future RDP titles.
- In tribal areas, communities be allowed to grant private title over homesteads while maintaining communal rights over arable land.
- The Subdivision of Agricultural Land Act, 1970 be repealed to make it easier for poor individuals to finance smaller, more affordable plots of land.
Khaya Lam (My Home) Land Reform Project
Khaya Lam is an FMF initiative that seeks to reverse the evils of apartheid. FMF Executive Director, Leon Louw, notes: “Black land deprivation was probably the single worst element of apartheid. Since apartheid ended, little has changed. In South Africa today there are still around 5 million black families living as tenants or without ownership rights in houses they have lived in for generations. There has been no systematic conversion of these “council owned” and “traditional community” properties to full unrestricted ownership. The prospects for economic upliftment throughout South Africa through the Khaya Lam national property titling project are exciting and immense”.
Under the project management of Perry Feldman, the FMF’s Khaya Lam project is gaining momentum. In addition to Ngwathe (FMF’s pilot project), FMF is now working in Grabouw, Stellenbosch, Graaff-Reinet, Barkly West, Viljoenskroon, Alexandra, Thanda and Cape Town (Hout Bay, Vukuzenzele, Hillview).
Khaya Lam: Brief progress report
In July, 88 titles were presented in Tumahole. In August, 209 titles were presented in Kwakwatsi, and 8 titles in Mokwallo.
Change a family’s life for the better today
If you would like to sponsor a title deed at just R2,250 (or a part title deed), please email firstname.lastname@example.org or do so directly through our website here.
PLEASE NOTE: We have a sponsor who donates just R200 per month toward Khaya Lam. His monthly contribution has so far sponsored 6 title deeds, contributing a whopping R600,000 into the economy. And another who sponsors one title deed per month. Why not join them?
- Why property rights are pro-poor by Mpiyakhe Dhlamini
- Expropriation without compensation a death knell for SA’s economic prospects by Chris Hattingh
- Letter: Property rights must be safe from political whims by Chris Hattingh
- The unreasonableness of expropriation without compensation by Martin van Staden
- Strong property rights are vital for economic growth by Chris Hattingh
- EWC constitutional amendment will perpetuate the evils of apartheid
Rule of Law
The Rule of Law is a Founding Provision of South Africa’s Constitution but this potentially powerful brake on the executive branch of government has not been playing its proper deterring role. A likely reason for this is that most South Africans do not have an adequate understanding of the true meaning of the rule of law.
10 imperatives of the Rule of Law
The Rule of Law Project formulated the following 10 imperatives of the Rule of Law.
- All law must be clear, predictable, accessible, not contradictory, and shall not have retrospective effect.
- All legislation that makes provision for discretionary powers, must also incorporate the objective criteria by which those powers are to be exercised. The enabling legislation must, in addition, stipulate the purpose or purposes for which the powers may be exercised.
- All law must apply the principle of equality before the law.
- All law must be applied fairly, impartially, and without fear, favour or prejudice.
- The sole legitimate authority for making substantive law rests with the legislature, which authority shall not be delegated to any other entity.
- No law shall have the aim or the effect of circumventing the final authority of the courts.
- No one may be deprived of or have their property expropriated, except if done with due process for the public interest, and in exchange for market-related, fair and just compensation.
- The law shall afford adequate protection of classical individual rights.
- All law must comply with the overriding principle of reasonableness, which comprehends rationality, proportionality, and effectiveness.
- The legislature and organs of state shall observe due process in the rational exercise of their authority.
- Nationalising the profession, controlling how lawyers think: This is troubling by Martin van Staden
- If our salvation depends on personalities, we are in trouble by Martin van Staden
- How government creates a problem and fixes it at taxpayers’ expense by Martin van Staden
- Constitution errs in tipping the scales in favour of expropriation by Rex van Schalkwyk
- Legislation by regulation undermines economic freedom by Martin van Staden
- Icasa’s pay-TV ‘musts’ make for daft twaddle by Leon Louw
- Icasa sports regulations pose a threat to constitutionalism by Martin van Staden
On 27 September, Martin van Staden presented The Rule of Law and judicial contempt for liberty in South Africa, at the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom, in Cape Town. This was the official Cape Town launch of Martin’s book The Constitution and the Rule of Law: An Introduction. The Rule of Law is a founding value of South Africa’s constitutional order. Yet, in case after case in our superior courts, this institutional protection for liberty is, at best, given lip-service and, at worst, ignored. The courts often receive uncritical praise in South Africa without the implications of and thought that went into their judgments receiving much attention.
You can view Martin’s presentation here.
The FMF is concerned about the energy crisis in South Africa, which continues to impact negatively on ordinary South Africans and has deleterious consequences for economic growth in the economy. Eskom, effectively, has a vertical monopoly on the entire system from generation to transmission and a large part of the distribution of electricity. This old, outdated model is slow to respond to changing circumstances. As a result, consumers are left in the dark and asked to consume less electricity during peak-demand periods. The solution: separate the generation from the transmission and distribution of electricity to make trading possible, including the sale of electricity across the grid from generators to large consumers (wheeling); establish competitive wholesale and retail markets. The unbundling of Eskom is the only feasible option to attract independent power producers (IPPs) and to secure our electricity needs moving into the future.
- Eskom’s monopoly has caused loadshedding, sabotaged SA’s future by Gary Moore
Some argue that freedom from apartheid has not made a substantial impact on black advancement. Others argue that for blacks to succeed they need government assistance through Reconstruction and Development Policies and Black Economic Empowerment legislation. Still others are of the view that economic freedom and growth, the development of a strong legal framework, and good infrastructure and security, are all that is required for the realisation of human potential.
- SA’s youth need a free future to flourish by Chris Hattingh and Martin van Staden
- SONA: Big (pipe)dreams, no detail by Mpiyakhe Dhlamini
- Population bugaboo by James Peron
- Unions: Friend or foe of the poor? by Mpiyakhe Dhlamini
- Prosperity and tolerance by James Peron
On 15 August, Temba A Noluthsungu participated in a panel discussion held at Nation Builder's In Good Company conference on 15 August 2019. Freek Robinson chaired the panel consisting of Hendrik Pfaff, Head of Sustainable Business Solutions, WWF-SA, Temba Nolutshungu, and Ndumiso Mngomezulu, Managing Director of The Associates, International Development and Business Strategy consultants.
You can watch the discussion here.