CONVENOR'S MESSAGE - Sipho Mbele
“Our children may learn about the heroes of the past. Our task is to make ourselves architects of the future”. (Jomo Kenyatta, former President of Kenya)
The month of April was dedicated primarily to the celebration of Freedom Month. It culminated in the celebration of Freedom Day on 27th April, marking the first democratic elections held in South Africa twenty eight years ago, on 27 April 1994. Those elections were remarkable and historic feat, taking place over four days and setting the stage for the creation of a new Constitution for our country.
The words of President Mandela, speaking one year later, during a speech in 1995; are electrifying and define the spirit of Freedom Day perfectly, reminding us to remember the sacrifices made by so many who paved the way for our democracy and exhorting us to work together to eradicate inequality, unemployment and poverty to ensure national unity and social cohesion:
“As dawn ushered in this day, the 27th of April 1995, few of us could suppress the welling of emotion, as we were reminded of the terrible past from which we come as a nation; the great possibilities that we now have; and the bright future that beckons us. Wherever South Africans are across the globe, our hearts beat as one, as we renew our common loyalty to our country and our commitment to its future. The birth of our South African nation has, like any other, passed through a long and often painful process. The ultimate goal of a better life has yet to be realised. On this day, you, the people, took your destiny into your own hands. You decided that nothing would prevent you from exercising your hard-won right to elect a government of your choice. Your patience, your discipline, your single-minded purposefulness have become a legend throughout the world...”
On 4th April President Ramaphosa announced to the nation, that “While the (covid) pandemic is not over, and while the virus remains among us, these conditions no longer require that we remain in a National State of Disaster”. He advised that the pandemic would therefore be managed in terms of the National Health Act and that after public comment had been received by 16 April 2022, on the published draft Health Regulations, the new regulations would be finalized and promulgated.
In recognition of the President’s call that “Now is the time to grow our economy and create jobs, Now is the time to get our country back on track, Now is the time to heal, to recover and to rebuild” - this newsletter sees a range of topics of interest to our subscribers, including: How to rebuild your business after a national crisis; How to start a business without capital; The impact of Small Business; Ways to manage your cash flow and grow profit, to name a few. We trust you will enjoy reading them.
The PBF is continuing its engagement with the University of South Africa School of Business and Leadership (SBL) and Unisa Enterprise (UE) to explore a potential partnership between the two organizations on skills development and training for our subscribers.
Over the past month the PBF Convenor continued to hold further meetings with Representatives of Missions in South Africa, designed to explore the potential for further future enhanced business opportunities between subscribers and the businesses of those represented countries.
As the PBF strives to promote and facilitate enhanced communication and interaction between business and ANC representatives in Government, it will be continually prioritizing and hosting ongoing events, providing a platform of engagement opportunities.
In closing we recall the words of President Mandela, speaking about Freedom Day: – “We dedicate this day to all the heroes and heroines who sacrificed in many ways and surrendered their lives so we could be free.”
We trust you enjoyed a meaningful celebration of Freedom Day and look forward to our next event together with you.