Perspectives #01/2019: Robbin’ the Hood: Inquiries into State Capture


This edition of Perspectives tackles questions of state capture, and how the concept can contribute to understanding and strengthening democracies across Africa. Our contributors also open the possibilities that emerge when “state capture” is released from particular institutional settings and national boundaries.

How to Steal a City


Perspectives spoke to Crispian Olver, a former government official and author of How to Steal a City: The Battle for Nelson Mandela Bay – An Inside Account, to help make sense of the state-capture phenomenon in South Africa.

By Crispian Olver

Greasing the Wheels of State Capture: Corporations, Secrecy and Profit


Any analysis of state capture is incomplete if it fails to grapple with the network of private actors that facilitates unethical, corrupt and other criminal economic activity. A narrow focus on the structural and institutional weaknesses in the ruling African National Congress (ANC) and the South African state risks ignoring equally institutional and systemic problems in the global financial sector that enable corrupt elements to spirit away ill-gotten wealth.

By Michael Marchant, Mamello Mosiana