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Fri May 27 12:25:08 SAST 2016

Zuma must be held accountable for rand’s fall: ACDP

TMG Digital | 12 January, 2016 17:42
Rand notes. File photo.
Image by: Russell Roberts / © Financial Mail

President Jacob Zuma must be held accountable for the rand’s sharp fall‚ the African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) says‚ adding that it will support a motion of no confidence in the president.

“The ACDP is shocked at the extreme volatility of the rand‚ which plummeted to almost R18.00 to the dollar in Monday morning’s Asian trading‚” said ACDP MP and Member of the Standing Committee on Finance‚ Steve Swart.

“While the rand has recovered to around R16.61 to the dollar‚ this weakness and extreme volatility is a matter of great concern‚” he added.

Swart said the rand’s weakness held negative consequences for imports to the country‚ such as oil and food‚ adding that five million tons of maize might have to be imported due to the worsening drought.

The weakening of the local currency would most definitely have inflationary effects and likely interest rate hikes later this month would add pressure to hard-pressed consumers. "While the rand is currently at the mercy of external factors‚ it is also not helpful that President Zuma on Sunday night stated that South Africans and the markets overreacted when he fired Finance Minister Nene last month‚ and that the effects of his decision were exaggerated.

“He must be held accountable for the reckless and illogical decision to fire Nene which not only caused the rand to weaken‚ but also caused significant losses on the equity and bond markets‚” Swart stated.


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