Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Food Riots of 2015

Riots continue unabated across Africa, with law enforcement and military forces unable to restore order, after food supplies controlled by companies which were in turn controlled by government aligned individuals, ground to a halt.  The reasons for the cessation of food production are many, but they can probably be broken down into the main causes more or less I chronological order.

  • Land “redistribution” laws were enacted to make the then ruling party to appear to care about the masses and devolving land ownership back to the masses. In reality most of the land restitution deals involved simple financial scams by government insiders to avail themselves of funds they had themselves allocated to land restitution. Land and Development banks sponsored by government were systematically looted and stripped of funds, very often the projects they were sponsoring existed on paper only and were vehicles for the release of funds into accounts controlled by government and bank officials. These funds to all intents and purposes were then deviated to other accounts and found their way to offshore banks and havens under fictitious trust names.
  • During the implementation of the land redistribution, no attention was paid to keeping arable lands productive, with a view to maintaining food independence and a steady reliable food supply. Clearly as most of the funds supposedly earmarked for development, were never received by any of the appropriate beneficiaries, many land redistributed, was immediately abandoned, and allowed to fall back into the hands of the weeds and wild fauna. Ironically, due to widespread corruption, some parcels of land were redistributed several times with similar outcomes as far the financial transactions were concerned. Due to a total lack of governance on the part of the corrupt government, and wholesale collusion on the part of the rotating land owners, the public was never made aware of the wholesale looting of public funds. The wholesale looting was facilitated by the hated Protection of Information Act, which prevented reporting on any “government” matters by the press, effectively keeping the world in the dark about the machinations of government which led to the eventual food apocalypse in Africa.
  • Faced with declining and dangerously low food supplies in South Africa, which up until 2003, had been one of the African Countries best positioned in terms of food supply, the government of 2012 entered into negotiations with the large multinational food companies to in effect take over all of the arable lands which through the governments poor policies had ceased to produce food. The multinational food companies, through paying substantial bribes were able to secure long term contracts which in effect gave them free reign over the lands and everything produced on them. they managed to secure agreements  which gave them full control over the lands, and later argued that the lands were in effect not subject to the laws of the country, as agreed to be the largely incompetent government at the time. This gave rise to widespread labour abuses and many labourers being imported by the multinationals from China to work for them in South Africa, to produce food to be exported mostly to China and the USA.
  •    Functional unemployment reached 80% of the labour force in 2014, due mostly to the collapse of the conventional agricultural sector, widespread unrest and the resulting crime, drove many of the skilled people still in the country to seek opportunities abroad, leaving a vacuum in the skills pool, which resulted in the average infant mortality rate rising to 25% of all new-born and a further 25% of all toddlers, dying prematurely. Adult life expectancy dropped to 35 years, with TB and HIV infection rates still rampant, and rising daily.  Secondary Diseases resulting from unattended corpses contaminating many liveable environments, ceased to measure after 2014, due to the skills flight of 2012, which effectively crippled the health system. Thousands of previously employed workers were unable to be employed by the new Foodcorps, due to the employment policies of the Foodcorps not having to follow the previous government’s racist guidelines of employment, and at the end of 2014, the leading cause of death was organ failure brought on by malnutrition.
  • The government of 2012, had through violent oppression and fraud managed to stay in power, and continued to be funded by the Foodcorps, and continued to display a total lack of regard for the citizens, by re-introducing the death penalty for a range of offences. These offenses were for the most part, related to crimes against the Foodcorps, and were mostly for food theft from the conglomerates. Real crimes such as murder and corruption were no longer of any relevance to the government.  The resultant widespread deaths from opportunistic diseases among the population resulted in a movement to the lands which had not been taken by the Foodcorps,  by groups of people of all races, who determined to survive had seen unity as the only weapon at their disposal. These mostly secret groups focussed on food survival and on increasing the numbers of the group willing to help themselves. From these loose associations arose the revolt.
  •  At first there were sporadic attacks on Foodcorps, largely spontaneous and unfocussed, venting the member’s anger at the government’s callous contempt for the citizenry. As the attacks grew bolder and more organised, they concentrated on the acquisition of weapons and equipment to ensure the movements ability to protect itself.  In the face of continued government brutality, the movement escalated its activities under the Banner of “all of the food for all of the people” Ironically echoing the empty rhetoric of the government of 2009, which the government of 2009, had never acted on, or had any intention of acting on, preferring instead to focus on their agendas of asset looting and self-enrichment. The government had become the hunted with rewards of food for every member captured or killed by the rebels,  with the outside world watching and not taking any action to stop the rebellion or help the government or the rebels.  
Scary? Improbable? Or completely possible?

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