Manyi leans on Busa over black candidate

Black Management Forum (BMF) president Jimmy Manyi—who is also the government’s spokesperson—gate-crashed a Business Unity South Africa (Busa) management meeting and instructed it to appoint a BMF candidate as its new CEO, Sake24 reported on Thursday.

The business section of Beeld newspaper reported that Manyi insisted on addressing the recent Busa management meeting after arriving uninvited.

Manyi told Busa that the BMF would compile a list of two or three names from which Busa should choose a new CEO.

A few days later, Busa received a letter signed by the BMF’s managing director, Nomhle Mkumbi-Ndopu.

It stated: “Following some bilateral consultations that the BMF has had with some of the black member organisations ... the BMF can confirm that there is consensus amongst black business that they should be the ones to be entrusted with the responsibility of submitting a candidate or two for the appointment of Busa CEO. This would be a step in the right direction.

“This caucus has made it very clear that it would not be supportive of any other name that it had not submitted.
Simply put, the caucus is requesting Busa to limit the number of candidates to only those that would be submitted by the black caucus.

“If Busa accedes to this request, it would be a major step by Busa to embrace transformation. As for the BMF, this is a deal-breaker that would determine further participation of BMF in Busa.”

Sake24 published a copy of the letter, which was sent to Busa on April 8.

Manyi refused to comment on Thursday.

A BMF source said Manyi did not make public statements on behalf of the BMF, and that his work as BMF president was behind the scenes.

Shortly after his appointment as government spokesperson, Manyi said he would remain BMF president but would pass on most of his BMF responsibilities to the deputy president.

Busa was expected to address the media at noon on Thursday about its new CEO, a position vacated by Jerry Vilakazi on Monday.—Sapa

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