Busa ‘alive and well’

2012-03-03 08:57

News of Business Unity South Africa’s (Busa) death is greatly exaggerated, says chief executive Nomaxabiso Majokweni.

Majokweni this week responded to the tacit and explicit comments by some leaders of the newly-reconstituted Black Business Council (BCC) that their withdrawal from Busa meant that the organisation – formed as a merger of historically white and black organisations – had lost the right to the name.

Responding to a speech by Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant, BCC deputy president Lawrence Mavundla said the council would be seeking a seat at the tripartite policymaking body, Nedlac, because Busa (current business representative at Nedlac) did not represent the BBC.

Said Majokweni: “Busa was formed by the coming together of 14 black organisations and 14 white organisations. It has grown to represent more than 60 organisations.

“When 14 members left (to form BBC), we were left with about 46 members from across sectors and spectrum. These organisations have black and white members. So this by no means implies the death of Busa.

“We welcome the formation of BBC because we want to deal with black business that is strong. They are within their rights to consolidate themselves that way.

“We obviously accept that there are issues that are peculiar, but what is a better place to address these than at an apex business unity organisation.

“The mainstreaming of the economic transformation agenda cannot be for the BBC alone.”

But, said Majokweni, Busa would not entertain the council’s demand for 50% representation in the decision-making structures and for a veto right on certain issues.

If it did, this would be a drawback and a return to racialised business formations of the pre-Busa days.

Responding to the impression that the BBC had President Jacob Zuma’s ear, she said: “The president is a president of all South Africans, not of one business formation.

“When the president spoke (at the BBC summit) he said what he wanted to see was a united business organisation that would ensure that at the end of the day the country was the winner and that (united business) must address the challenges we had as a country.”

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