New blacks group seeks real equity

INCLUSIVE: Black Business Council leader Ndaba Ntsele at the launch. PHOTO: MOHAU MOFOKENG
INCLUSIVE: Black Business Council leader Ndaba Ntsele at the launch. PHOTO: MOHAU MOFOKENG

THE re-established Black Business Council wants to focus on addressing unemployment, poverty and inequality.

The council was launched at Gallagher Estate in Midrand last week and received endorsements from various cabinet ministers and labour federation Cosatu.

General secretary Sandile Zungu said yesterday that the council would engage other social partners with a view to tackling the triple challenge of unemployment, poverty and inequality.

The relaunch of the council follows its split with Business Unity SA (Busa) after black businesses felt that their interests were not being equally represented in the organisation.

"We are not just for growth in isolation of tackling these three issues. We are saying whatever growth happens in the economy it must be inclusive growth," Zungu said.

He said the council had a better understanding of the problems of the people living with unemployment and poverty.

"We come from these communities that are experiencing high levels of unemployment and deep poverty. I really do not want to talk much about Busa, but what we have found is that they did not have sympathy for those issues. Theirs was that government must deregulate, move out of the space," he said.

Zungu said a separate ministry for small businesses was needed.

"Most employment will come from that sector. Most entrepreneurial endeavours will be driven by small business, yet the sector lacks access to finance and has poor payment cycles and trading conditions for them to do business.

"The expectation is that if big businesses thrive, small businesses will thrive. But there is no connection.

"There has to be focused attention on small business if we are to unlock its potential."

Zungu said the council supported the changes in the BBBEE Act and the creation of the BEE Commission that would oversee the transaction.

"We will be watching that empowerment space. We want to make sure that it benefits as many people as possible and not a few individuals and their families," Zungu added.

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