Johannesburg, South Africa
The Black Management Forum (the BMF) which is at the forefront of advocating and lobbying for transformation in Corporate South Africa is pleased with the appointment of Mary Vilakazi as the Group Chief Operating Officer (COO) and Executive Director of the Firstrand Group. Ms Vilakazi’s extensive background and experience in financial services and insurance positioned her as the best choice to take over the role of COO.
"We are pleased and excited about Ms Vilakazi’s appointment. It is very gratifying and refreshing to us to see that there are still companies who regard transformation as a business imperative and continue to make concerted and deliberate efforts in ensuring that they advance transformation where it matters most, at executive level. Firstrand has demonstrated their respect and appreciation for black talent and leadership," said the BMF President, Mncane Mthunzi.
The BMF believes and advocates for the breaking of artificial glass ceilings in Corporate South Africa. Breaking of these glass ceilings through appointments such as that of Ms Vilakazi will ensure that there is a critical mass of black people in leadership positions within companies and other areas of our society. “The black people whose acceleration and advancement we advocate for is on the basis of merit and it is precisely because of their merit that we are engaging in this struggle,” continued Mthunzi
The Black Management Forum extends itswell wishes to Ms Vilakazi and pledges its unwavering support to her as she ascends in her new role later thisyear..
Johannesburg, South Africa – 15 February 2018
The Black Management Forum (the BMF) congratulates the newly elected President Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa as the 5th president of the Democratic Republic of South Africa.
“The BMF would like to pledge its unwavering support to our newly elected president and his government. We have full confidence and trust in the leadership of President Ramaphosa. We wish to remind him of the dire economic challenges that the country is faced with, such as the economic downgrades, high unemployment and dwindling foreign and domestic investment. The country has lost ground. We need to roll up our sleeves and rebuild South Africa,”
the BMF President Mncane Mthunzi commented.
“The BMF will be partnering with the President and his government in turning around the fortunes of our fellow compatriots. Transformation should now be a business imperative and be given priority in normalising our society. South Africa has to meet the challenge of building a truly inclusive economy that will address the injustices of the past,” Mthunzi continued.
The BMF urges all South Africans to give support to the new president. We should all make an effort to be more patriotic and sympathetic to changing the lives of our fellow countrymen so that they can live in a country they deserve.
Johannesburg, South Africa – 6 February 2018
The Black Management Forum (the BMF) congratulates Mr Fani Titi on his appointment as a joint Chief Executive Officer of Investec Limited (Investec). Mr Titi is a competent business leader with proven business acumen which he has displayed over the years in his diverse and remarkable rise in corporate South Africa. The BMF has no doubt that he will add significant value in his capacity as the joint CEO and will be at the forefront of driving transformation at Investec.
Mncane Mthunzi, the President of the BMF says, “the BMF applauds Investec for making a contribution in driving transformation at executive level. Mr Titi’s appointment highlights the benefits of converting a non-executive director to an executive director in a company. As a current non-executive director at Investec, Mr Titi is already well versed in all aspects of the company. The conversion makes sense for companies to leverage high performing and thought-leadership that already exists within its board and use non-executives as a talent pool to fill vacancies at executive levels. The conversion of non-executive directors to executive directors will accelerate black talent and help top management in organisations to reflect the demographics of our society. “
“Whilst we applaud Mr Titi’s appointment, the BMF is opposed to the joint CEO arrangement that Investec has opted for. We are against such an arrangement as it does not add any value to the bottom line. It also adds unnecessary additional costs as two people are being paid to drive a single bottom line. We hope that Mr Titi will be the sole CEO in the foreseeable future. As the BMF we pledge our support to Mr Titi as he takes Investec to greater heights and drives to achieving transformation at Investec,” concluded Mthunzi
Johannesburg, South Africa 1 February 2018
The Black Management Forum (the BMF) has noted with concern and disappointment the cancellation of the Africa News Network7 (ANN7) contract by MultiChoice. The media industry's role in our society is significant as it helps in providing facts and different interpretations of our daily lives and the world we live in. The information that the media generates empowers communities to make informed decisions on business, socio-economic and political issues to mention but a few. In fact, it is the mirror that reflects our society.
The BMF views the cancellation of the ANN7 contract by MultiChoice as regressive and thus does not promote and advance diversity within the media industry. In addition, South Africa is a democratic country and all attempts to bring about diversity within the media industry must be embraced and supported by all citizens including corporate citizens. The dominance by MultiChoice is susceptible to the company misusing its power, duly influencing the whole industry negatively and closing out other players that they might not agree with on principle.
Mncane Mthunzi, the President of the BMF alluded to this fact citing that, the BMF has received the news of the cancellation of ANN7s contract by MultiChoice with absolute discontent. How the company has handled this matter leaves a lot to be desired, where the whole country has witnessed the flaunting of corporate governance principles to inconsistencies in how the company handles their partnership agreements. It becomes clear to all that MultiChoice did not consider the impact of their decision to potential job losses that staff members at ANN7 will suffer. This, in our view as the BMF goes against all attempts by the government and business to find workable solutions for the betterment of our economy and the nation at large.
The concentration of the media industry by a few players that are mainly white owned remains a concern to the BMF. The result of this is exactly what we are witnessing today, where MultiChoice is adamant in crowding out other players, in particular a black-owned company. The dominance of MultiChoice within the media space remains a serious threat to our hard-fought democracy. In a democratic country, diverse media ownership and views must be promoted in order to ensure that all players in particular black-owned media companies are given space to operate and that their existence is not threatened and lastly that all news are widely reported in a most inclusive manner, Mncane said.
Johannesburg, South Africa – 22 January 2018
The Black Management Forum (the BMF) welcomes the appointment of the new board of directors at Eskom as announced by the Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa on Saturday, 20 January 2018.
Eskom is one of the key State-Owned Companies (SOCs) in South Africa and plays a major role in our society. It remains a critical entity to the people of South Africa, its employees and the capital market participants worldwide. The South African government has an embedded responsibility in ensuring and promoting sound corporate governance; operational and financial stability at Eskom.
The BMF has faith in the new board at Eskom and supports its appointment. “We believe, as the BMF, that the effective governance at Eskom will encourage better operational and financial decision making, efficient use of the utility’s resources and strengthen accountability of all those charged with leading this strategic asset”, said Mncane Mthunzi, the President of the BMF. Mthunzi pleads with the new board to scrutinise Eskom’s operational hurdles which if left unattended will most likely bankrupt the company.
Mthunzi says that the effectiveness of this new board will be tested by its ability to improve governance within the utility, strengthen management’s capabilities in driving the utility to navigate its current business challenges whilst delivering sustainable power solutions to help grow the economy.
The BMF believes, under the stewardship of Jabu Mabuza as the Chairman of the Board and a seasoned business leader, Phakamani Hadebe as the interim Chief Executive Officer who is a competent and capable leader, both supported by highly skilled members of the board with diverse experience and impeccable business credentials; that Eskom will be able to draw from this and steer the company towards a sustainable state of economic, financial and corrupt-free governance for the benefit of all its stakeholders.