Johannesburg - The Reputation Institute has published a raft
of findings this weekend including a leadership survey ranking 24 prominent
business, political and black economic empowerment (BEE) leaders, BusinessLive
Mining magnate and CEO of African Rainbow Minerals [JSE:ARM]
Patrice Motsepe was rated as having the best reputation overall, while Absa
Group [JSE:ASA] CEO Maria Ramos and Nedbank Group [JSE:NED] CEO Mike Brown have
the worst reputations among the leaders of the JSE's top 10 companies.
Graham McKay of SABMiller [JSE:SAB] was rated second and
Cynthia Carroll of Anglo American [JSE:AGL] third.
BHP Billiton [JSE:BIL] CEO Marius Kloppers came fourth and
Sanlam [JSE:SLM] CEO Johan van Zyl fifth.
Dominik Heil, MD of the Reputation Institute, said in a
press release the survey could reflect declining confidence in the banking
sector, particularly in the light of the global economic crisis.
"Recent events in the economy have cast doubt on
whether CEOs behave ethically," Heil said.
Ramos and Sasol [JSE:SOL] chief David Constable, who came
eighth on the list, scored the lowest in the areas of behaving ethically. Ramos
scored the lowest in the area of being an effective manager.
Carroll was seen as the CEO who behaves the most ethically
while McKay was perceived as the most effective manager.
Despite the controversy over MTN's acquisition of a licence
in Iran, MTN Group [JSE:MTN] CEO Sifiso Dabengwa was rated the boss with the best reputation.
"If you are a network user it is probably more
important to you that you have network, rather than whether the company has
operational problems overseas," said Heil.
Included in the survey was a poll of four prominent BEE
leaders: Motsepe, Cyril Ramaphosa, Saki Macozoma and Tokyo Sexwale.
Ramaphosa was placed 13th overall, Sexwale 15th and Macozoma
Heil speculated that this could be because BEE had lost its
iconic status in the eyes of ordinary citizens.
"It is not that people are disenchanted with BEE
overall, but they see politically connected players as being just like everyone
"Only Patrice Motsespe stands out. He is seen as
someone who seems to have filled the BEE space in an entrepreneurial way,"
Heil said. Motsepe scored the highest rating in creating value for the country.
The BEE leaders chosen were not independent and were
probably seen in the same way as politicians, political analyst Aubrey Matshiqi
was quoted as saying.
President Jacob Zuma was listed ninth out of 10 politicians
and in 23rd position overall, with Helen Zille, Patricia de Lille, Lindiwe
Mazibuko and Mosiuoa Lekota ahead of him.
According to the survey, areas in which Zuma scored poorly
included behaving ethically, being an effective manager, creating value and
making South Africa a better place.
Congress of South African Trade Unions general secretary
Zwelinzima Vavi was voted the political leader with the best reputation.
Vavi scored the highest in the area of being a strong and
Heil said he was surprised that the president featured so
low on the rankings.
But "since the survey was done before the whole Spear
debacle, it may have changed slightly", he added.
Matshiqi said he was not surprised that the number one spot
did not go to the head of state. This showed that politics and politicians had
an image deficit problem far greater than that of the private sector.
"I think the vote for Vavi has a high ethical and moral
content that is informed by the perception that corruption has become endemic.
"It shows a lack of trust and confidence in political
leadership," he said.
Matshiqi said with Motsepe seen as the best leader and only
four politicians making the top 10, it appeared that people perceived private
sector leadership as more credible than political leadership.
Matshiqi said the fact that Deputy President Kgalema
Mothlanthe ranked high above Zuma meant he was popular with these particular
"But the people in the sample are not the ones who are
going to be voting in Mangaung.
"What this does say is that if the president was chosen
by ordinary people, then Zuma would have a lot to be worried about,"
Heil said that while former ANC Youth League president
Julius Malema had been surveyed before he no longer held an official position.
"But his ratings were so low that it would be deemed
irresponsible for us to include him in the survey. According to our survey, he
is a fabrication of the media conversation.
"We have never in our entire history seen such low
ratings for someone, so it is not responsible to mention him by name in a
public conversation. It is a conversation not supported by people, and we live
in a democracy," said Heil.
Heil said the 1 304 survey respondents came from Gauteng,
the Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape.
They had varying incomes, ages and education levels and 52%
were female, 58% black, 30% white and 7% Indian.
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