Well-organized crime syndicates are disrupting the business of important organizations and major employers in South Africa.
The expansion of illegal trade is taking its toll on major retailers such as Pick n Pay, Checkers and Woolworths, while organized corporations are accused of disrupting supply chain systems with vandalism. specifically for important organizations like Transnet.
One of South Africa’s biggest employers, the mining sector, has also sounded the alarm about blackmail in the procurement sector.
The Sunday Times reports that Gareth Ackerman, president of the South African Consumer Goods Council (CGC), says the government must take action against illegal trade in particular, or else the country could end up with a ‘home’ The country is completely controlled by the mafia.
The CGC, which represents the heads of the retail industry, said illegal trade is a serious problem and has a major impact on retailers. According to Ackerman, even before the pandemic, 26% of cigarettes sold in South Africa were illegal, the Sunday Times reported.
“We haven’t reached the tipping point yet, but we could get there soon,” Ackerman said.
“This is hurting industry, it’s hurting jobs, it’s hurting the government and it’s hurting the economy.”
South Africa is at a tipping point
The supply chains that support the movement of goods and goods across the country are now under threat.
City press. Reports of disruption to Transnet’s northern corridor rail lines due to cable theft are causing attention in the mining industry.
Coal group Exxaro recently told Transnet Feight Rail (TFR) that regular shipping disruptions to the Richards Bay export terminal is beneficial for the trucking industry, City Press said.
In November, a train with 97 wagons full of coal derailed and overturned en route to Richards Bay – rendering any other cargo on the rail impassable. This incident followed several cable thefts a few days earlier.
According to City Press, miners were then forced to rely on trucking, which in Exxaro’s case would have cost them six times as much. TFR told City Press that the incidents in the north corridor were a clear indication of it being attacked by organized crime groups.
When asked if they believe select players in the trucking industry were behind the attacks, TFR said it was still ‘collecting intelligence and conducting investigations to determine check for any intentional damage or vandalism’.
Gavin Kelly, CEO of the Trucking Association, told the publication that vested interest groups would not hesitate to resort to vandalism to improve their own business.
The Executive Director of Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) said in End of November that domestic crime syndicates do more damage than bad policy or failure to provide services.
“We are in the grip of an epidemic with major industries from mining to construction being targeted by blackmailers. This is undermining all our efforts in building a country with a growing economy based on good policy and an efficient state,” Mavuso said.
“We are in serious danger of becoming a mafia state with the official sector being squeezed out by criminals with a wide range of activities within our law enforcement agencies,” she said.
Read: South Africa at risk of becoming a mafia country: CEO