Roelf Meyer 3rd Land Reform in Imbizo on February 26, 2015 in Johannesburg, South Africa. ANC Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe warned farmers who had had the brutal economic consequences of Zimbabwe, when white South Africa "came on board and works with the ANC when it comes to land reform. (Photo: Gallo Images / Foto24 / Denzil Maregele)
The transition to democracy, when he led talks on behalf of the national party, with Ciril Ramaphos, the chief mediator of the ANC, became one of the most well-known faces of South Africa. For 20 years, he left an active policy to play a behind-the-scenes role in solving world conflicts. But Meyer is working with the South African government again: this time to help the economy move.
Roelf Meyer was in Zimbabwe Daily Maverick Wednesday, January 30, spoke to her.
Of course he was: if a country is burdened by civil conflict, chances are good, you will find Meyer inconspicuously behind the scenes to try to find a resolution.
A 71-year-old has overcome his negotiating role in South Africa's transition to democracy in an international career in conflict mediation. Meyer describes his organization – In Transformation Initiative – as "quite involved in several countries, providing advice on problem solving".
These challenges are related to some of the world's most difficult geopolitical issues. For example, consider Myanmar.
"I'm involved here, ”says Meyer, and the rude bitch. "It's one of my headaches."
He is a "consultant" with the government of Burmese leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who has faced increasing international condemnation of the repressive regime and the inability to act in brutal military repression against Rohingya Muslims.
Meyer has said very little about his work in Myanmar. A The Guardian report In November 2018, Meyer was one of the "small figures" who still had Suu Kyi's ear.
"I have access to her, ”Meyer admits Daily Maverick. "Does she always listen to me, there is another question – and she does not."
He says that the situation on the ground in Myanmar is "much more complicated" than is usually reflected in the media.
"It's not just Rohingya's problem. There are at least 15 armed ethnic groups in the country, all of whom have to deal with solutions. ”
However, of all Meyer's current projects, which he describes as the most enthusiastic, he plays at home. On Tuesday, January 29, President Cyril Ramaphosa took part in a Business Unity Company, organized by a South African company, where the Public Private Partnership for Growth (PPGI) provided Ramaphosa with plans for ways in which South African private and public activities could work together to fight unemployment and stimulate the economy.
PPGI is perfect for Meyer and his friend Johan van Zyl, Toyota Europe and African CEO.
The way Meyer tells it was the opening state of the Ramaphosa State, which created the PPGI concept. In particular, the President's invitation to the South African Society Thuma Me – Send me – it was an inspiring trick.
"We came up with this idea of a private sector response that the President said [in his SONA address], ”Says Meyer.
"Emphasis was placed on a sectoral approach; to engage in various sectors of the economy and say: "This is what the private sector can do to make the economy grow and create jobs."
Possible meeting on the plane between Meyer and President Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma helped to secure public procurement. Both are moving back in cooperation with President Nelson Mandela's first Democratic Cabinet. Meyer says that the Dlamini-Zuma project was 'immediately interested' and invited Meyer and his colleagues to the Union buildings to discuss it further.
What is now known as PPGI has led managers and representatives of 22 sectors of the South African economy to work with the government to create jobs, move the needle to economic growth, and promote skills training.
To this end, the PPGI has identified 18 specific projects for this purpose in various economic sectors. They were presented to President Ramaphosa, the Cabinet Economic Group, and the respective Directors General.
"We were asked to allow the president to say something [the forthcoming] About 10 projects by SONA, and we gave him 18, ”says Meyer.
"Each one is quite exciting. One of the small business sectors says, “Let's create partnerships at local government level” where local governments can create opportunities for small businesses. It's something exciting that I don't think it's put on the table. "
It is clear that the Ramaphosa administration believes that cooperation with the private sector is an essential part – perhaps the main components – to make sweater cables to the South African economy. Indeed, PPGI is not the only one of its kind: the 2018 Presidential Summit was based on a similar model of public-private cooperation.
The South African people could be forgiven for PPGI as just another negotiating store that promises the world, but most likely the goods would be delivered in practice.
"It's not just a pie in the sky, ”Meyer's items.
"What I've noticed about working with different industries was an absolute enthusiasm for managers and businesses. They want to do something in the country. More than 20 industries have been involved in this way and they have done so voluntarily. ”
He admits that the government's willingness to deal with "inhibitors" will be a critical factor. private sector quoted on Tuesday it hampers its ability to promote economic growth: from policy uncertainty to an unstable energy situation.
"There are harmful factors that we have to overcome first and get out of the way, ”says Meyer,“ the factors that have caused the economy to fall over the last decade. ”
Though he describes himself as being cautious forever, Meyer is convinced that there is a new spirit in South African air that makes it the right moment to take root in significant economic growth.
"I wouldn't even have tried [a project like the PPGI] in the previous administration, ”he admits. DM
Are you South Africa or South Africa?
Maverick Insider is more than a revenue scheme for readers. Although it is not a "state of mind", it is a way of thinking: it is to think that independent journalism makes a real difference in our country, and that is the will to support this effort.
No #GuptaLeaks to state capture to Scorpio's exposure to SARS, Daily Maverick has affected South Africa and its political landscape. When we entered the election year, our mission to defend the truth has never been more important. The free press is one of the most important lines of defense against election fraud; without its national survey, it can become very nasty, very quickly, as we have seen in Congo recently.
If you want a practical, tangible way to change South Africa, consider signing in to become a Maverick Insider. You choose how much and how often (monthly or yearly) and in exchange you will get a great benefit. The greatest benefit for all (in addition to internal peace)? Giving a real difference to a country that needs your support.