[LISTEN] As a Matter of Fact: Fact checking the EFF's 2019 elections manifesto

The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) launched its 2019 elections manifesto last month with three claims about school dropout rates, unemployment and land redistribution.

But it seems two of the claims are incorrect.

Researcher at Africa Check Cayley Clifford joined Azania Mosaka to unpack the claims.

READ: An in-depth look at the EFF manifesto and whether its feasible or not

ALSO READ: EFF election manifesto - callers share their views on what it means to them

Clifford explains that the party's claim that SA's school dropout rates are among the worst in the world is inaccurate.

She says the Unesco data from 2014 to 2018 shows that South Africa was in the top 50% of 68 countries based on secondary school completion.

In support of their global comparison, the EFF also referred us to a 2011 working paper which Professor Martin Gustafsson was part of and the issue we found is that it is not a global comparison, it looks at 14 countries. The other issue is that it is not the most recent data, it uses data from 2003 to 2009.

Cayley Clifford, Africa Check - Researcher

There are different ways to measure school dropout rates. Education panelists generally use and accept Unesco's definition which looks at the proportion of students who are enrolled in a school in a given year, who are then not enrolled in the next year. Alternatively you can look at general household surveys.

Cayley Clifford, Africa Check - Researcher

Clifford also says that the claim that the government has bought less than 7% of the land initially meant for redistribution since 1994 is incorrect.

She says data shows that it has bought a third – or 8.2 million hectares – of the land.

They referred us to a 2016 report on land reform and this was commissioned by a high level panel assessing different pieces of legislation that have come into effect since 1994, one of them being land reform.

Cayley Clifford, Africa Check - Researcher

We have a total estimation of a 122 million hectares of land in South Africa, and 6.7% of this is what the government has bought so while it is correct to say government has bought less than 7% of South Africa's total land it is incorrect to say they have bought less than 7% of the original targeted land because we see that figure - 8.2 million hectares is actually 33% of what was originally targeted.

Cayley Clifford, Africa Check - Researcher

Click on the link below to hear more from Clifford...


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