The Black management Forum (BMF) held its second seminar on 17 April. The key note was delivered by businessman and guest speaker, Dr Monde Tabata. Tabata
Dr Tabata’s message was one directed at motivating the youth to take charge of improving South Africa and their own lives by creating a new narrative for the country. Tabata stated that the youth can’t look to his generation for solutions for SA’s problems because the older generation is still trapped in the discourse of the past. “Everyone is angry. South Africa is consumed in anger”, Tabata stated.
Tabata, who has created initiatives and trusts in Gauteng and in his home province of the Eastern Cape, lamented the fact that the youth aren’t given enough support by South African businesses and the government to succeed after leaving school or even after graduating from university. He also expressed that he was afraid that if SA does not develop the economy so that students are able to find jobs, the country would gradually become unstable.
Tabata also cited the fact that because of the political situation in the country, international donors to SA have been significantly reduced. He also claimed that this is made worse by SA businesses sitting on stacks of money as they are unwilling to invest in SA. Tabata stated that existing businesses are weak in their advocacy as they are only looking to be on the correct side of politics.
Tabata also claimed that SA has been burdened by its history. He claims that the discourse from many black businesses is “I don’t want to say the same thing that the white guy says”. He states that SA’s history has created a situation where there is no voice of business on the table. He also stated that black communities needed to discard what he saw as an anti-entrepreneurial discourse. He claimed that this discourse went along the lines of branding ambitious or entrepreneurial people as greedy.
Dr Tabata finished off by reiterating that intellectual institutions like Rhodes need to establish think tanks where students can be able to create a new narrative for SA to transcend the current one.