Imperial chief executive Mark Lamberti has resigned from his position as a director at Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA). He, however, remains on Toyota distributors Imperial’s top job.
“Business Leadership South Africa appreciates the commitment provided by Mr Lamberti and the Imperial Board to accelerate the Imperial Group’s transformation initiatives of recent years”, said BLSA.
His resignation follows a Business Day report on April 9 2018 that Lamberti would resign as a board member of the BLSA but had requested time to draft a letter of resignation.
Lamberti was found to have impaired the dignity of Adila Chowan, a former employee at Associated Motor Holdings, an Imperial Holdings subsidiary, by referring to her as a “female, employment equity candidate”, which he unreservedly apologised to.
“Following the recent High Court judgement on the merits in favour of Ms Adila Chowan and against Associated Motor Holdings, Imperial and himself, the BLSA appreciates Mr Lamberti’s apology”, the press statement issued by BLSA reads.
According to BLSA, Mark Lambert is the longest-serving director, and he has a strong track record of contribution both to the various businesses he has led and to the country.
Imperial’s Lamberti’s resignation comes at the back of pressure from various groups such as the Economic Freedom Fighters, the Congress of South African Trade Union, the Black Business Council and the Black Management Forum.
Mail & Guardian last week reported that the BMF questioned the BLSA’s silence on the matter and had since not issued any release on Lamberti’s saga. “BLSA will make no further comment,” a business SA representative said.