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Busa leaders kicked out of summit - report

Sep 07 2011 09:45 Sapa

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Johannesburg - Business Unity SA (Busa) CEO Nomaxabiso Majokweni and president Futhi Mtoba were asked to leave the Black Business Summit, according to a report on Wednesday.

Majokweni, who took up her position last week, called Tuesday's incident "most unfortunate", according to Business Day.

"The reasons given were that Busa would be discussed and therefore our presence as Busa would be inappropriate," she reportedly said.

The two-day summit was called after the Black Management Forum withdrew from chief business lobby group Busa in July, saying Busa's structure was fundamentally flawed, with the voice of black business "permanently outnumbered and suppressed".

"I don't know why they rocked up," Bafana Ndendwa, vice-president of the Confederation of Black Business Organisations, which convened the summit in Johannesburg, told Business Day.

"If they were in the room, we would not have a chance for a natural discussion. It's awkward for the people discussing, and for the people being discussed."

He said Busa had been invited by mistake, but the invitation was later withdrawn.

According to Business Day, Busa said the confederation had revoked its invitation in a letter dated September 3, which it only saw on Monday.

Majokweni attended as a guest of summit co-host the National African Federated Chamber of Commerce, and Mtoba was there through the Association for the Advancement of Black Accountants of SA.

President Jacob Zuma addressed the summit on Tuesday, calling for delegates to put the interests of South Africa first.

"We trust that you will have fruitful deliberations and will put the interests of the country first above all else," he said.

Zuma told the summit that unity in business was important to the government.

"The unity of the business sector is paramount in ensuring the achievement of the transformation goals. As government, we need a unified and united business voice to work with."

He urged delegates to "find one another".

"The time to differ I think is gone, it's now time to find one another."

Zuma said he had tried to meet Busa.

"I intended to see Business Unity South Africa last month... but they were not available at the time."

On Tuesday, Majokweni said in a statement: "Busa was not at the summit, but we are currently liaising with the presidency to find out more details around that." 

busa  |  jacob zuma  |  futhi mtoba  |  businesses
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