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Sazini Mojapelo - Founder and CEO of Hand in Hand SouthAfrica Semeyi Zake Head of Programming at Business Day TV Walter Penfold - CEO of Everlytic Steve Ajulu - CEO of Dajo Technologies Nathi Nkosi - CEO of Xuma Infrastructure Group

Michael O’Brien-Onyeka CEO of Greenpeace Africa

B RO U GH T TO YOU BY

M AGA ZI N E

R29,95

Issue 16

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GLEN AUSTIN Glen Austin High School Quality Private High School, with a child centred approach. Located in Midrand Gauteng, our aim is to produce young adults who are independent thinkers with physical and moral courage, who are articulate, well mannered and tolerant, educated in the widest sense of the word, sensitive to the needs of others and responsible active members of society.

PRINCIPAL Alec Abbott

“I had been a teacher in Mpumalanga for the past 17 years. One of my former students who is a director of Glen Austin High approached me to become principal of the school last year. I accepted the position in spite of the obvious risk of failure

as a start-up entity. I thought it would be a good challenge and a great opportunity to be part of building something up and creating a tradition while instilling values in this society. I am proud to say that we have established all the necessary operational systems, with state of the art technology including tablets and interactive white boards. We have excellent staff members and students from diverse backgrounds who learn in harmony. My passion is to make a difference in students lives and I would love to see Glen Austin become a school with a strong alumni who come back and support the school because of its deep ethos and tradition.”

Mark Ndlovu – Grade 9 “Coming here from my previous school was a relief because the teachers are more interactive with us and I feel a lot more connected with the class during lessons. Using tablets is awesome; it was confusing at the beginning but I am used to it and I find it much better than carrying textbooks. The food in our cafeteria is quite a good blend between healthy and tasty.”


HIGH SCHOOL WHY CHOOSE GLEN AUSTIN HIGH SCHOOL? •

Samkelo Mvelase – Grade 9 “I have always been afraid of principals in other schools but I like Mr. Abbott; I feel like I can walk up to him and tell him any problem I have. I play soccer and came out as top goal scorer of the season, scoring 12 in 11 games and we also came top of the league. The school is very supportive of sports; it’s like the whole school is cheering for us and the coach Mr. Moyo is very passionate.”

Rachel Robertson – Grade 9 “We moved to the area recently and my mother liked the small classes meaning I get more attention. I like a new school because the teachers are also new so they take time to understand us better. I feel safe in this environment because you can approach anyone at any time and chat to them.”

• • • • • • • •

Lee Crossland – Grade 8 “I moved from a school that has many children in each class and I felt like a number, but here I feel like a person; people know who I am. Since moving here my grades are much higher. I take the school bus from the Gautrain which is convenient and fun. I eat at the canteen using an e-card for payment which is much better than carrying cash.”

Exclusive schooling where we bring the very best for your child. Internationally acclaimed artist, to teach art and drama. Educated in a healthy environment. Small classes, with passionate teachers. Brought up with Christian values, ethos and positive discipline. State of the art technology, including tablets/e-books and interactive white boards We will assist in the setting of educational goals for your child. Psych Ed offered by registered psychologist. A unique workshop based programme, held weekly to strength and enhance your child’s mental wellbeing. Life coaching, peer relationship and self-esteem issues and adolescence by our registered child psychologist.

CONTACT US 38 Hampton Rd, Glen Austin, Midrand Tel Number: 011 023 7340/1/2 Fax Number: 086 652 2078

Email: admin@glenaustinhigh.co.za Website: www.glenaustinhigh.co.za


TABLE OF CONTENTS

6 Editorial 7

Your Feedback

9

Briefs - Articles available on our website

17 Cover Story - Michael O’Brien Onyeka –

Executive Director, Greenpeace Africa

20 Sazini Mojapelo

Founder and CEO of Hand in Hand SouthAfrica

24 Semeyi Zake

Head of Programming at Business Day TV

26 Walter Penfold - CEO of Everlytic 30 Steve Ajulu - CEO of Dajo Technologies 35 Nathi Nkosi - CEO of Xuma Infrastructure Group 40 Book Review 42 TAP Immigration 45 Chioneso - Africans are author’s of their own misfortune 46 The Last Word 49 David Barnard: When passion meets activism 50 TAP Social Pages

www.theafricanpro.com


EDITOR’S NOTE

GO GREEN THIS SPRING Available at

06

F

or this edition, I had the privilege of interviewing the Executive Director of Greenpeace Africa, Michael Obrien-Onyeka whose profile is our cover story. It was an engagement that I found profoundly motivational, not only because of the man’s interesting story but also because of his eye-opening perspective to climate change. We are all aware that weather patterns are changing but few of us, including yours truly, think that the environment is an issue worthy of our constant consideration. Onyeka’s revelations backed by undisputable evidence - that the continent is headed for severe food shortages as a result of environmental challenges makes me wonder what future we are unwittingly bestowing on our children and grandchildren. Onyeka advises us all to heed Gandhi and be “the change we want to see in the world”. As the cold dark weather fades and a pleasant spring touches

As advertised on

down, let us all do what we can to allow our descendants to experience the pleasure of having seasons as predictable as ours. In the event that my son in years to come asks me what I did for the environment, I need to have a credible answer for him.Another cause-driven personality profiled in this issue is Sazini Mojapelo, an inspiring woman who has taken on the challenge of job creation with admirable results. Read about Walter Penfold and his journey to heading Everlytic, a software company that is growing at a rate that should inspire anyone aspiring to create a home-grown tech entity able to challenge any offerings from America’s Silicon Valley. Other technology entrepreneurs in this edition are Steve Ajulu of Dajo and Nathi Nkosi of Xuma Infrastructure Group. Their experiences offer crucial lessons for anyone wishing to exit the corporate environment for a solo adventure in the world of I.T. Our final profile comes from our new publishing executive Dumisani Hlatshwayo who chats to Semeyi Zake about the ins and outs of heading the programming department of a reputable business television station. The magazine would not be complete without our regular contributors, Wanjiru Waichigo-Njogu with the book review of Majok Tulba’s ‘Beneath the darkening skies’, IBM Consultants review of immigration regulations thus far, Sakutukwa’s view of corruption in Africa and Yaw Peprah’s real life perspective of the pros and cons of being self-employed. Enjoy the mag.. and the good weather. KC Rottok, Managing Editor Twitter - @africankc

As verified by

Publisher: The Proud African Professional (Pty) Limited Reg. Number: 2010/012428/07 10 Madison Square, 195 President Fouche Drive, Randburg Republic of South Africa Tel: 011 251 6325 www.theafricanpro.com & www.expatriate.co.za Director: Carol Malonza – carol@africanpro.co.za Twitter: @mueni8 Managing Editor: KC Rottok – kc@africanpro.co.za Twitter: @africankc Deputy Editor & Content Advisor Leah Maina Publishing Executive Dumisani Hlatshwayo Edition Writers/Contributors Keith Kundai Wanjiru Waichigo Chionesu Sakutukwa Andreas Krensel Yaw Peprah Photography Mzu Nhlabati www.creativenation.co.za Design Mike Obrien mike@obriendesign.co.za Website Drutech Media www.drutechmedia.co.za Advertising Enquiries info@africanpro.co.za To subscribe or contribute an article, email us at info@africanpro.co.za All rights reserved. Excerpts may be used as long as this magazine is credited as the source. Longer versions of our content may only be used with the written permission of the Publisher. Neither the publisher nor the editor accept responsibility for any of the information from edition writers or contributors. Whilst we have taken care in preparing this publication, the publisher/ editor does not warrant its completeness or accuracy. The editor retains the right to edit all contributions. Advertisers are responsible for their material. © The African Professional / The Expatriate SA: ISSN 2218 – 757X.


YOUR FEEDBACK

LIKE & FOLLOW SELECTED TWEETS TO THE EDITOR

@africankc (over 14 000 followers) @Nyukutrader: @africankc Motivating stuff, thank you for inspiring us with positive African-stories. #AfricanPride 03.06.14

@t_ngoloyi: @africankc Masterful -Absolutely powerful stuff!!!(Talking about the Chimamanda Ted Talk website article). 03.06.14

@VusiThembekwayo: Check out this magazine called African Professional. Seems to be worth a read. 10/06/14

@TheNduna: Devastating, great loss to Africa & the World RT @africankc: Kenya’s best ever techpreneurs killed in armed robbery http://bit.ly/Umg1SB. 09.06.14

@NjabuloSDladla: @africankc Inspiring article, eye opening and it’s essential & @sokoanalyst Thank you for sharing your experiences. (Entrepreneur lessons website article). @T_Mothotoane: @africankc I absolutely love reading about the positive African stories in your mag. Great job. @50CPLady: @africankc Good news, but of course, the question then becomes how will that growth be distributed? I would bet very unevenly. (Africa growth website article). @StudioAfrika: @africankc... thanks for highlighting successful, progressive #African professionals. We wouldn’t have heard of them if not for #africProf.

Currency Trader @Nyukutrader @africankc Interesting article & a fascinating bio of Sir Sam Jonah. Thanks for sharing! #AfricanPride @esytwts @africankc That’s a typical example of ‘from Grass to Grace (Lere story Issue 14) 29.05.2014

Risper ohaga @risperg Hats off to the African Professional for an outstanding event and very professional magazine. Well done @africankc and @mueni8 (Women’s Breakfast) @DeeMboriNgacha: @africankc #Africanprobreakfast ‘Women when you get to the board room, makes sure you contribute. You have not ‘arrived’, it’s just begun’ (Women’s Breakfast)

that came with it! As for fellow Africans who display arrogance and superiority, I treat them like the good diligent victim graduates of an induced state of catatonic existence that they are. They are functionaries, therefore mere tools, instruments and things in a system not of their own making and design. As I often ask, “what type of African are you?” - Nakes (Monkey on Malawian Highway website article).

Hahaha...what a nice app! Maybe I should find a bride with that app?) But really a lot of apps that have become viral in the past like whatsapp, so I’ll await the next step for the Brideprice App. - Shane Holmes (Brideprice App website article)

@comzaza @DeeMboriNgacha: @africankc #Africanprobreakfast ‘Problems on the continent are our collective problem as Africans’ - Polo Leteka”

Why is this only for South Africans? Why not enforce it across the board... Just seems like exploitation. - Beatrice

@ntingasuzi @africankc What an inspirational story to all women! (Babs Kagga story)

(South Africans react angrily to Kenya Visa Requirements article)

SELECTED FACEBOOK POSTS @Jabu_Buthelezi Get yourself a copy of @africankc and connect with Africa’s true sense of stories. (Inspirational, informative)

Kenyans are also required to pay a fee for a visitors and transit visa; I think this was what made Kenya also put the same requirements to SA.

SELECTED ONLINE COMMENTS - Mburu Charles My view is live the change you want to be and see aggressively in Africa without apology, I do that! That in fact is how we Africans ended up where we are with all the racism and stereotyping....meekly acquiescing and bowing to aggressive domination, chauvinism and bigotry

www.theafricanpro.com

(South Africans react angrily to Kenya Visa Requirements article) 19 June 2014

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ARTICLES AVAILABLE ON THEAFRICANPRO.COM

EFFIONG:

EATON:

DELOITTE:

FAST50 AFRICA PROGRAMME KENYA’S BEST TECHPRENEUR KILLED IN ROBBERY BRIDEPRICE APP GOES VIRAL IN KENYA AND NIGERIA Nigerian digital agency Anakle headed by CEO Editi Effiong has come up with a brideprice app that went viral on social media. It works by asking a series of questions about a woman’s looks, qualifications and prowess in the kitchen with a value assigned to each response. The web application then calculates how much in terms of cash and physical appearance the woman’s bride price is worth. A Kenyan version has been launched which has also caused a stir.

Full story on www.africanpro. co.za/technology

One Africa Media reported on the untimely death of Kenyan businessman and Group co-founder Carey Eaton, who died under tragic circumstances following an armed robbery at a friend’s home in Nairobi. One Africa Media comprises Cheki, BrighterMonday, BuyRentKenya and StayNow in Kenya, as well as similar Internet businesses across Africa including jobberman. com and popular South African property website privateproperty.co.za. Full

story on www.africanpro.co.za/ technology

Professional services firm Deloitte has launched the Deloitte Technology Fast50 Africa Programme to recognize technological innovation on the continent. The Fast50 Africa Programme is focused on recognising companies that have achieved the fastest rates of revenue growth in Africa over the past five years. Full story on www.

africanpro.co.za/technology

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ARTICLES AVAILABLE ON THEAFRICANPRO.COM

NGUNZE:

FINANCE MINISTER:

RUMBIE:

RUMBIE REPRESENTS ZIMBABWE AT AFRICAN FASHION RECEPTION 10

NEW SA FINANCE MINISTER NENE PUTS FAITH IN THE NATIONAL DEVELOPMENT PLAN

PROFILE OF NEW KENYA AIRWAYS CEO On 25 June 2014, outgoing CEO of Kenya Airways Titus Naikuni announced that he will be replaced by Mbuvi Ngunze who has been acting COO since 2011. Full story

on www.africanpro.co.za/ professionals

SA’s newly appointed minister of finance Nhlanhla Nene believes that the National Development Plan could be the tool to address the economic woes of the country. Full story on www. africanpro.co.za/professionals

After the official launch of the Africa Fashion Reception in Paris last year, the Nigerian government through the Federal Ministry of Tourism, Culture & National Orientation - hosted the 2014 African edition of the event in the beautiful city of Abuja from 3rd – 5th July at the International Conference Centre. Zimbabwean designer Rumbie Muzofa was selected to represent her country. Full story on www. africanpro.co.za/entrepreneurs


Briefs

OGUNLESI:

CLIFF:

DREAMLINER:

KENYA AIRWAYS DREAMLINER LAUNCH

I MADE 5FM R100, 000 AN HOUR, I WANT SOME OF THAT

NIGERIAN WHO BOUGHT LONDON’S GATWICK AIRPORT Adebayo Ogunlesi - chairman and managing partner of Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) - bought UK’s Gatwick Airport for £1.51 billion pounds from the British Airports Authority saying he intends “to make Gatwick a truly first class experience”. Article and video interview available on www.africanpro. co.za/entrepreneurs

Gareth Cliff - a South African entertainment professional who over a number of years has become one of the country’s most successful stories in the world of radio - shocked listeners by announcing on 31st March 2014 that it would be his last show. He has since ventured to a world he refers to as ‘unradio’ in which his radio broadcast is available on mobile, television and on the internet. Full story on www.

africanpro.co.za/entrepreneurs

Kenya Airways new Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner made its maiden flight from Nairobi to Johannesburg and was celebrated at a ceremony held in Hyde Park Johannesburg. Pictures of the ceremony can be viewed on our Facebook page. Full story on www.

africanpro.co.za/organisations

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ARTICLES AVAILABLE ON THEAFRICANPRO.COM

MWANZA:

NCUBE:

CHRISTINE LAGARDE:

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TREVOR NCUBE’S MAIL & GUARDIAN LAUNCHES AFRICA DIGITAL PLATFORM FOUNDER OF ZIMBABWE ACHIEVER AWARDS Read the sentiments of Zimbabwe Achiever Awards founder Conrad Mwanza and other organisers on the launch of the event in South Africa. This event will emulate the structure and hopefully success of the Zimbabwe Achievers Awards in the United Kingdom which is now in its 4th year. Full

story on www.africanpro.co.za/ professionals

Trevor Ncube is a Zimbabwean entrepreneur who became the owner of reputable South African newspaper Mail & Guardian in 2002. The company recently launched Mail and Guardian Africa (www. mgafrica.com) a digital news platform for Africans to tell the African story. Full story

on www.africanpro.co.za/ entrepreneurs

IMF’S CHRISTINE LAGARDE: INEQUALITY IN AFRICA IS WOEFUL Christine Lagarde is a French lawyer and Union for a Popular Movement politician who has been the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) since 5 July 2011. In a recent interview, she expressed her concerns about inequality in Africa. Full story on www.

africanpro.co.za/professionals


Briefs

FRIEDMAN:

TWINOBURYO:

TWINOBURYO: UGANDA’S TWINOBURYO ROBBED BY WOMEN IN PRETORIA

‘BOUNCER’ APPROACH TO SA IMMIGRATION REGULATIONS COUNTERPRODUCTIVE The nightclub bouncer approach to immigration is doing us more harm than good writes Steven Friedman from the Centre for the Study of Democracy. Two families that recently won court orders overturning the refusal of the Department of Home Affairs to allow foreign nationals married to South Africans back into the country won widespread sympathy. Full

story on www.africanpro.co.za/ professionals

Stephen Twinoburyo is a Ugandan born professional and entrepreneur previously featured in The African Professional magazine for his work as founder of the Association of Ugandan Professionals in South Africa in addition to initiating a mathematics tuition start-up in Pretoria called Schimatics Solutions. Twinoburyo revealed a disturbing ordeal in which he was relieved of his prized possessions at the hands of two women. Full

story on www.africanpro.co.za/ entrepreneurs

13


ARTICLES AVAILABLE ON THEAFRICANPRO.COM

THEMBEKWAYO:

14

NAMIREMBE:

WHY BEE IS KILLING ENTREPRENEURSHIP IN SA

UGANDAN WINNER OF GOOGLE’S AFRICA CONNECTED CONTEST

Vusi Thembekwayo provides a compelling argument as to why South Africa’s policy of affirmative action known as Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) may be killing the country’s entrepreneurial spirit among the previously disadvantaged people it is crafted to benefit. Vusi is an African professional who is described on his website as a welltravelled business speaker and the youngest director on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in South Africa.

We profile Eunice Namirembe, an African professional and currently the Country Director at Text to Change - a mobile for development organization. She was the winner of the “Africa Connected” competition run by Google Africa which required participants to outline their use of the internet in their varied endeavours. She discussed the Medical Concierge service that she devised which won her the award. Full story on www.

Full story on www.africanpro. co.za/professionals

africanpro.co.za/entrepreneurs

TINUBU:

‘NIGERIA NOT AS CORRUPT’ SAYS WALE TINUBU, YOUNGEST OIL BARON In a televised interview, Adewale “Wale” Tinubu, the Group Chief Executive of Oando PLC asserts that corruption in Nigeria is not as bad as widely believed. Oando PLC is Africa’s leading indigenous energy solutions provider listed on both the Nigerian and Johannesburg Stock Exchanges. Full story

on www.africanpro.co.za/ entrepreneurs


MICHAEL O’BRIEN-ONYEKA EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, GREENPEACE AFRICA

T

he story of how Michael Onyeka added the name O’Brien to his surname says a lot about his upbringing and his personality. He was born during the Biafran war in 1968 when his Igbo community was fighting to secede from the rest of Nigeria. Members of the Jesuit church risked their lives by travelling to the region to provide humanitarian assistance despite the government’s vicious crackdown on all aid to the area. Those who risked their lives included an Irish missionary known as Father O’Brien who adopted a sickly Michael and went out of his way to see that he got all the nutrition and medicine he needed to make him whole again. “While I was living in London; and working for Amnesty International, I researched the O’Brien family and got in touch with his brother. He was overjoyed and insisted that I visit Ireland even though his brother had long passed away. On arrival, I was overwhelmed by the entire O’Brien clan who came to receive me. They treated me so well and it was the first time I saw my childhood picture alongside the Jesuit priest.” As a thank you to the family and the departed missionary, Michael officially changed his name to the double-barrelled surname. Although the Father left Michael’s life as an infant, something in the interaction appears to have inspired a life of service. After primary school, he successfully petitioned to attend a military school and remained within the defence forces for eight years before leaving to join University of Lagos. “I was in training to be in a leadership position as an officer in the army but

left for two reasons. First, I didn’t believe that the military belonged in government as was the case at the time, and secondly I believed its role was to defend its nationals not crackdown on those protesting against it.” At university, Michael studied law for a year before switching to sociology on the realisation that he was more interested in learning about his fellow man rather than legal principles. With his military background he was a student leader responsible for mobilisation and was the first student to be appointed national spokesperson for Amnesty in 1992. “I helped raise over USD 100,000 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1997. As the project coordinator for the celebrations, it was the first time I got remunerated by Amnesty

and subsequently, I was invited to London to be a global campaign manager commencing with Amnesty’s 3rd global campaign against torture.” Michael remained overseas for eight years working on various campaigns and living in various countries in Asia, Europe and Latin America. In 2006, he took the decision to return to Africa because he ‘is a passionate P a n -

17


Africanist who believes the continent has a great need for non-governmental work’.

production, we have high energy poverty across the continent.

The idea of a centralised energy grid system is not working; they are expensive to maintain and it is difficult to channel energy from them. We need to decentralise energy the same way mobile technology has moved away from fixed lines. For instance, in Turkana in Kenya where there is perennial drought, there is the opportunity to set up solar panels that can generate sufficient energy for export In April 2012, he was appointed which will generate sufficient Executive Director for funds for their food and water.” Greenpeace Africa. “The NGO “Africa is at a crucial traffic This interviewer had to cut is a Pan-African environmental junction. We are looking at a doubled the interview short as Michael justice organisation committed to finding solutions to the population within three decades speaks passionately about environmental challenges and yet we are being affected by the environmental cause and could go on all day. facing the African continent as climate change. We have a collective part of the global community. interest in getting it right. If we He has clearly found his niche We see ourselves as a catalyst don’t, we will be facing issues of having renewed his contract as Executive Director and with no for change rather than a massive depreciation in productivity plans to leave Greenpeace in driver for change. We believe especially in agriculture. Already the near future. He mentions a in empowering Africans to take charge of their own over 20 countries are dependent on famous French Revolutionary initiatives by supporting food aid and a failure to respond to when asked about his view in life and in his career. pre-existing stakeholders, the environmental challenges will “Napoleon said that ‘the for example, enhancing the word impossible is not in voice of Treasure the Karoo result in severe food shortages...” my dictionary’. I live by that organisation here in SA.” quote with a can do attitude believing that we are only limited by on food aid and a failure to respond In Africa, the organisation is working the limits of our imagination. I am to the environmental challenges will on preserving the oceans and marine also a networker as I believe we need result in severe food shortages.” life given that the livelihoods of many to go beyond our individual hands and Michael believes that the fight for on the continent are linked to that. pull together towards a common goal. environmental justice needs a new The organisation is also working to As an individual and as Greenpeace approach, “we are winning a few preserve the second largest rainforest Africa, we don’t mind taking a backseat battles but we need to press the in the world (the Congo Basin) and let others be recognised as long reset button in order to win the and is promoting clean renewable as the objective is being achieved.” war for environmental justice.” energy in Southern Africa. In Eastern “We need to change our lifestyle Africa, the organisation is pushing KC ROTTOK and cut waste. If you look at energy for ecological farming as opposed After a seven month sabbatical in Addis Ababa with the African Child Policy Forum and a one year stint with an American NGO in Iraq, Michael was appointed regional campaigns and policy manager for Oxfam International. He was responsible for ten countries in East, Central and the Horn of Africa working from Nairobi.

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to chemical-intensive agriculture. “Africa is at a crucial traffic junction. We are looking at a doubled population within three decades and yet we are being affected by climate change. We are seeing acidification of our oceans and extreme weather conditions. We are bringing together the States, civil society and private sector to work together as we have a collective interest in getting it right. If we don’t, we will be facing issues of massive depreciation in productivity especially in agriculture. Already over 20 countries are dependent


SAZINI MOJAPELO

CEO of Hand In Hand Southern Africa

T

he high unemployment rates in Africa have led many governments to look into a variety of job creation strategies. Zimbabwe estimates its unemployment rate at 70%, Swaziland 40% Mozambique 60% and Kenya 42%. The continued rise of unemployment figures has necessitated an increased focus on creating jobs over looking for jobs. One organization focused on job creation is Hand in Hand Southern Africa which is fighting poverty through job creation.

20

TAP visited Sazini Mojapelo who is at the helm of this enterprise development vehicle. Sazini was born in Zimbabwe and holds a Masters in Development Studies from the University of Cape Town. Tell us about your career before Hand In Hand?

intention of recruiting me to assist in implementing a poverty alleviation programme.

formed and training was taking place but we had not developed a roadmap to enterprise development.

I declined the offer of employment choosing instead to consult for them. I put together a proposal based on my work in ASGISA which they approved. I later found out that the Swedish philanthropist Percy Bernevik, who founded Hand in Hand in India and was a member of the International Investment Council advising the President, had

I wanted women to believe that they can start, run and grow their business to the point where they can become suppliers to supermarkets like Pick n Pay and Shoprite. Tell us about your organization structure and your modus operandi?

“We have grown from a single person working from home to over 200 employees and revenues of over R30 million a year. As a founder and CEO of HIH in SA, I would like HIH to be top of mind for any donor, corporate or government when they think of women economic empowerment, enterprise development and job creation...”

Before starting Hand in Hand in Southern Africa, I worked for the South African government in the Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative-South Africa (ASGISA)-Jobs for Growth programme. We were designing a programme that was supposed to create a million jobs in South Africa. Just as we began to implement the programme, it stalled because of the changes in the presidency, leading to its discontinuation in 2008. How did you then end up forming Hand in Hand SA? A mining company in the North West province approached me with the

also put together a proposal for the same community which had not been successful. He invited me to meet and discuss working together, which led to the formation of Hand in Hand SA. How were the first years of Hand In Hand? The first two years were quite hard; I started in my home and then moved to sharing my husband’s office before moving into our own offices. On the project front there were many challenges that required us to revisit the plan and incorporate lessons from the field. Self-help groups were being

We build on the Lao Tzu quote “Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” That is our modus operandi. It is the ethos on which HIH across the world is founded. Today HIH has a well-functioning board of directors who are responsible for the governance and oversight of the organization.

Percy, is no longer with HIH SA. True to his word he retired after three years. I am the CEO of the organization, precisely to ensure that HIH can continue beyond me and grow to be like World Vision or ‘Save The Children’. We have over 200 employees and have expanded our operations into Zimbabwe, Lesotho and Swaziland. How do you manage so many people? It is not easy, but with a good management team the work is more manageable. I have learnt over the years that I should always have people around me that I can also learn from. That way with a strong capable management


team, deliverables are met. “What gets measured, gets done” - we have created a culture of weekly and monthly reporting which has helped us exceed our targets. Why does your organization have a bias for women? Koffi Annan once said “there is no tool for development more effective than the empowerment of women”. Research has shown that empowering a woman is also empowering a community and impacting a generation. For HIH women are at the centre of our development agenda. This is not to say we discriminate against men, but we have seen in all our operations that a woman that has been empowered empowers others. What inspired you to extend Hand In Hand to other countries and what is your vision as an organisation? The need in Africa is great! As HIH, we have seen the need to go global to help in poverty reduction. Our motto is to think local and act global. Our goal in Southern Africa is to reach 500,000 people through our programmes. We are part of an international network [aiming] to create ten million jobs globally. What next? For Hand in Hand in Southern Africa, I believe we are at the “tipping point”. I read a book from Malcolm Gladwell, called “The tipping point: How little things can make a big difference”. Basically what Gladwell states is that


the tipping point is that magic moment when an idea crosses a threshold or tips over and spreads like wildfire or grows. We have grown from a single person working from home to over 200 employees and revenues of over R30 million a year. As a founder and CEO of HIH in SA, I would like HIH to be top of mind for any donor, corporate or government when they think of women economic empowerment, enterprise development and job creation. KEITH KUNDAI

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BUSINESS DAY TV HEAD OF PROGRAMMING,

SEMEYI ZAKE One of the first things that strikes you about Semeyi Zake when you meet him for the first time is that he is a very steady man. TAP caught up with him in the parking lot of The Times Media offices in Rosebank as he reported for his duties as Business Day TV’s head of programming. He spotted us struggling to find our way and after greeting us warmly, led us to his place of work for our scheduled interview.

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The Zake family had to leave Uganda in the early 1980’s when the country was affected by the so-called ‘bush war’ when Semeyi was only five years old. They relocated to Lesotho where his father, Mr. JW Zake, served as a lecturer for several years. Although he has a scant recollection of his childhood, he has a vivid memory of Maseru’s renowned cold weather. “When there was snow, not only could you see it but you could also feel it in your bones. I remember that in the mornings the car used to be covered with ice and you would need boiling water to loosen the door to get in!” The family later moved to South Africa and settled in the former Transkei homeland in the town of Butterworth where Zake Senior resumed teaching and lecturing roles. After high school, Zake went to Rhodes to pursue a Bachelor of Commerce degree majoring in management and economics. He also decided to take a part-time job with Sanlam within its consumer-facing department. He recalled: “Quite suddenly, I had a bad year where everything just went wrong.

I was in my second year when Sanlam decided to retrench.” But Zake proved to be bigger than the setback caused by the Sanlam retrenchment. He transferred to the then University of Port Elizabeth and later landed another job with Med Scheme where he worked as a call centre agent responsible for processing medical aid claims, a job he held until he eventually graduated. To Zake’s dismay, Medscheme also started retrenching but this time Zake’s work ethic was his salvation. “It was just that the work ethic I had developed at that time that was different from others which always stood me in good stead. When you are willing to do what is needed to be done regardless of whether or not it is in your job description, employers appreciate that and this leads to more opportunities for you. I kind of survived the retrenchment because of the value I brought to the table; I believe that was the reason I was spared.” At the end of that year he moved to PPN, a division of KFML. The company was still setting up its systems when Zake joined meaning he had little to do. He offered to clean the storeroom to his bosses surprise and his willingness to do menial duties led to his promotion to a position of leadership. “I was poised to become the general manager of the division which as the new kid on the block rubbed a few

Image courtesy of S. Zake


people the wrong way. My boss advised me that ‘as long as your career is on an upward trajectory, you will meet resistance as there is no smooth journey to the top’. Those are words I cherish to this day. However, I was not in a good space at the time and decided to resign,” he revealed.

“When you are willing to do what is needed to be done regardless of whether or not it is in your job description, employers appreciate that and this leads to more opportunities for you...”

While at PPN, Zake joined a part-time MBA programme and a fellow student within the media industry, noticed he was a good writer and encouraged him to submit a piece for a local newspaper. Zake penned a piece on the Shabir Shaik saga which to his surprise was published in the Eastern Cape Herald.

Then in 2006 he applied for The Times Media training program which began in 2007. He was brought to Summit TV as a field journalist only to unearth yet another talent that had been laying dormant in him. “I ended up on screen by pure chance. The presenter who was scheduled to present didn’t show up and I was the only one available person to fill that gap. Despite being unprepared and inexperienced, I gave this rare opportunity my best shot.” His employers were impressed by his presenting skills. After that first live presentation he started presenting on a regular basis and in 2011 became editor of Summit TV which was subsequently rebranded to Business Day TV in line with the daily newspaper by the same name within the Times Media Group. Zake is still as hard working

as he used to be during those Sanlam days. He plays a very broad role at Business Day TV; he is involved in operations and sales while also presenting various shows including the Africa Business Today show. “I love what I am currently doing, I work within a fast environment where you have to tell stories, you have to give information and you have to educate. I believe that I am a problemsolver and this job presents one with many opportunities to do just that” Zake is however quick to also point out that he does not yet know whether what he is doing is his real passion. That said, he has a clear view of where he wants to be. “During my return interview, my Managing Director asked me where I would like to be in five years time. I told him I intended to be sitting in his chair!” Zake revealed that he is a music enthusiast, and that he can also play

drums and guitar very well. He comes across as grounded and it is a bit surprising that he is not yet married. “One of my mentors once said you will always have challenges in life, when you choose a partner choose someone who understands the journey you are on. That’s why I believe it takes time to find that particular person. For me it will happen when it happens and I am not under any pressure to tick that box.”

He had this advice to any professional who wants to be successful: “Have a goal in mind but also remember that it won’t be a straight path. Sometimes taking a few steps back can help you to reposition yourself better. Patience is also an important virtue and take time to listen and learn from others.” With respect to his leadership and management style, Zake stated that he is meticulous in his approach to staff and corporate issues. A servant leader at heart who prefers ‘leading from behind pushing them towards the goal rather than being at the front directing them on what to do’. DUMISANI HLATSHWAYO

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Everlytic’s Managing Director

WALTER PENFOLD

Article images courtesy of W. Penfold


O

n Everlytic’s website, Walter Penfold is described as being responsible for “doing all the things nobody else wants to do”. During our interview with him at his offices in Rosebank he revealed that he studied a BCom in Information Systems and worked as a developer for ten years.

my own business. I knew that you will have to work much harder as an entrepreneur than you do as an employee. The MBA is a mile wide and an inch deep; it taught me a little bit about a lot of things.” He decided to quit his corporate job in 2003 and went into business full time.

and water harvesting products … I sold my house and invested all my money into the company.”

This bold decision demonstrated his belief in the notion that he was capable of doing better things on his own. He recalled the contentment he felt after his first sale in spite of its meagre quantum - R400 for a micro “My business plan for the irrigation system sold to a private entrepreneurship elective was judged He became tired of coding and his home. The company turned over a to be the best in my MBA class,” he yearning for business knowledge led million rand in its first him to pursue an year and went on to MBA on a part time We centralise all communications from sending invoices grow even bigger in basis. His aim was to marketing emails to sending sms notifications. We its second. But while not to climb the previously focused primarily on our mailing system sales were ringing corporate ladder but which was popular with publishers for sending emails to off the till, cash flow to get the necessary skills to start his their subscribers and attracting them to their website. We management was own business. figured we could expand this to all businesses including poor.

banks such as FNB who liked our product so much that to invest in us...

“I knew that if I they decided wanted to be CEO of Nedbank it would take me another thirty years and I couldn’t wait that long. So I thought the best option for me would be to use my acquired skills to start

recalled. “I took it as a sign that I was onto something and that is how I became the co-founder of Wetec, a company that supplies irrigation technology

“We ran out of money and that was my first big practical lesson. I had to borrow from my brother which was not an ideal situation but we took it as a lesson learnt. In most cases, the survival of any business

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depends largely on how well the entrepreneur handles his cash flow.” In 2008, Penfold left the full-time employ of Wetec although he remains a shareholder in the business to this day. He joined Endeavor, a non-profit organisation that helps entrepreneurs in nineteen countries.

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“We centralise all communications from sending invoices to marketing emails to sending sms notifications. We previously focused primarily on our mailing system which was popular with publishers for sending emails to their

Eighteen months later, an associate Sam Hutchinson, a p p r o a c h e d Penfold with the idea of joining a Johannesburg based technology business. The request was prompted by the fact that Sam’s partner Josh Adler had left the business to pursue an MBA in Europe. “I decided to take up the opportunity because I realized that it had global potential. The product was originally called pMailer which we rebranded to Everlytic as we do much more than just mail. I am the managing director and run From left: Walter Penfold and Sam Hutchinson the organisation subscribers and attracting them to their alongside Sam who is the ‘chief website. We figured we could expand nerd’; the product visionary and this to all businesses including banks creative force behind the business.” such as FNB who liked our product so Everlytic is a cloud marketing software much that they decided to invest in us.” platform which enables companies Penfold revealed that Everlytic has to communicate with their customers been doubling its number of employees via email, mobile and social media.

annually and has over a thousand clients making it one of the fastest growing technology companies in South Africa. “Our competitive edge comes from our understanding of how digital communication works in South Africa and emerging economies in general. Delivering communication to an inbox can be quite hard as internet service providers (ISP’s) often interpret such mail as spam and block it. We have built relationships with ISP’s that allow us to get the mail through. In addition our technology has a host of features that also differentiates us from the competition.” Everlytic recently opened shop in Kenya but Penfold admitted that it was difficult to penetrate the market leading to closure of their Nairobi office. They do however service clients there from SA and are back to the drawing board exploring ways of expanding their operations internationally. DUMISANI HLATSHWAYO


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STEVE AJULU

CEO of Dajo Technologies

When the Ohio motivational speaker Les Brown wrote: “Accept responsibility for your life. Know that it is you who will get you where you want to go, no one else” he probably had the likes of Steve Ajulu in mind.

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“When I finished high school in the late 80’s, I was interested in becoming an electrical engineer but things did not go according to plan,” Ajulu said in an interview with TAP at Dajo House in Johannesburg.

Technikon.” The move to South Africa in 1999 was facilitated by Steve’s eldest brother, Professor Rok Ajulu. After a year at the Technikon, Rok encouraged him to pursue a degree.

with Dajo Associates to develop platforms that provide data for a variety of users such as emerging small businesses, policymakers, financial institutions, national, provincial and local government. The name Dajo is taken from Kenya’s Luo ethnic group and broadly means something that is extraordinary.

“If I have to single out a particular high, it is our selection to work with the Tshwane Metropolitan on its long-term vision. We felt very accomplished to be at the launch surrounded by important stakeholders from government and the community, and witness the celebration of something we helped craft...”

While waiting to go to college, Ajulu decided to get a job at Kenya Breweries in Kisumu despite his father’s disapproval of working before completing tertiary education. He later moved to the capital city Nairobi where he worked with a publication as a proof-reader.

“In 1995 my father passed away and being the last born I was reluctant to leave my mother’s side. I remained in Kenya where I worked with Toyota Kenya as an accounts clerk while pursuing accounting studies at the Kenya School of Professional Studies. My siblings were not convinced that working while studying would work and hence they encouraged me to move to South Africa to study management accounting full time at Port Elizabeth

Consequently, he graduated from Rhodes University in 2004 with a Bachelor of Commerce majoring in Accounting and Information Systems. “I subsequently moved to Johannesburg where I completed an article contract and after which I worked briefly for an audit firm. I always had the desire to start and run my own business and with this in mind, I regularly attended to opportunities outside of working hours alongside my associates. In 2009, I decided it was time to leave employment.” Dajo Technologies is a technology solution provider working closely

“I am one of the senior partners at Dajo Associates alongside my aforementioned brother who is a political economist. The other two partners are Molefe Molefe who is a labour lawyer and Dr Sandra MusengiAjulu who has a Phd in management.

We offer research services, policy and strategy advisory. For instance, we have previously been retained by the Tshwane Metro to consult on their Vision 2055.” Dajo Technologies’ first area of operation was prepaid services for the Ekurhuleni and Tshwane Metropolitan municipalities. This exposed them to other technological offerings such as outsourced and consulting services which offered better margins. “We now offer such products as design and kitting of server rooms with modern fire suppression and cooling systems as we have done for [the]


Article images courtesy of S. Ajulu


Gauteng Partnership Fund (GPF). We are an authorized dealer of Citrix which is a product that enables greater mobility by projecting one’s desktop onto other mobile devices. Our latest offering which is proving popular with municipalities is cloud services such as Office 365 which eliminates those frustrating moments when email exchange servers “go down” due to lack of skilled manpower to maintain them.”

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The group also encompasses Dajo Real Estate which owns pockets of property in Gauteng and Grahamstown which they intend to develop into residential units. Furthermore, there is Kajulu Energy which is pursuing renewable energy projects in Southern Africa, Kenya and Ghana. “We are business people who believe in diversity. We constantly seek areas that could provide us a good return and renewable energy is one such area as it is a growth sector,” Ajulu said. When asked what the lows of being in business is, Ajulu confessed that obtaining funding is a challenge. “The biggest low is when you have an investment that needs funding and either your funding is too small or you can’t secure the required funding at all because you don’t meet certain BEE credentials.

After a fruitful presentation, we returned with high hopes and kept seeking finality on the project go-ahead only for the company to eventually turn us down for being ‘too advanced’”. Dajo’s highlights include yearly growth from humble beginnings in a tiny room to their own building in an office complex in Midrand.

my father. He was the Managing Director of a sugar company and ensured that many families in my village got their [children’s] education paid for or got employment. His name resonates with so many because of that. I hope for Dajo to establish that kind of legacy.” DUMISANI HLATSHWAYO

“If I have to single out a particular high it is our selection to work with the Tshwane Metropolitan on its long-term vision. We felt very accomplished to be at the launch surrounded by important stakeholders from government and the community, and witness the celebration of something we helped craft.” Ajulu believes success is not how much money one makes but the difference the company makes and the impact it has in the industries in which it operates. “I think our reputation is everything. When people talk about us, it is more important that they say we produce good quality than we have made a lot of money. I think this s t e m s from

Another challenge is when you spend time and resources working on a proposal only for it to be turned down. I recall spending a year pursuing a prospect in Kenya. From left: Prof. Rok Ajulu, Molefe Molefe, Dr. Sandra Musengi-Ajulu and Steve Ajulu


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MEET NATHI NKOSI

CEO OF XUMA TECHNOLOGIES

B

elow is our interview with Nathi Nkosi, co-founder of Xuma Technologies which specializes in optic infrastructure, trenching, fibre maintenance, structured cabling and horizontal drilling. The company has a nationwide footprint and employs thousands of people.

Tell early

You started off as a junior network analyst at Standard Bank, how was that experience?

The only certain thing I had at the time was a commitment from a friend to use his offices. At some point both my cars were repossessed and I had to stand by helplessly and watch them go.

There is a saying that goes: you can’t fill a full cup. My time at Standard Bank taught me that I had to empty myself in order to absorb as much knowledge as possible. The wealth of knowledge that I gained from my co-workers humbled me. I remember once sitting with a problem for nearly two hours before deciding to ask a colleague for some help. It took them only two minutes to solve it!

How and when was Technologies founded?

Xuma

My brother Khethi Nkosi and I formally registered Xuma in 2004. He is a software engineer by profession whereas my experience is in network engineering. We realized that there was a gap in the market as very few companies offered both networking and software development solutions. Despite being in our early twenties, we decided to venture into business having grown up in a family of entrepreneurs. Our father ran several businesses including shops and a manufacturing plant. We would frequently get involved in these which gave us some experience in trading.

us days

about your in business?

Once we took the decision to start the company, I was first to quit my job. It was daunting given that I had a mortgage, two cars on finance and two boys to look after.

But the beauty of being in business is that if you know what you are doing and are willing to work hard for it, results eventually begin to materialize. My brother was still employed and thankfully he was always there for me and supported the business a great deal.


In 2010, Xuma Infrastructure won the best SMME prize which included R100000 and an overseas trip. What inspired the decision to donate the cash prize? When we founded Xuma we never saw it as a vehicle to enrich ourselves. The Xuma idea was based on the values of job creation. My father was always seen as a job-creator and we want to continue that legacy.

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We were raised to give back to the community and as such we help students who are studying various disciplines including engineering and theology.

In keeping with that spirit, we decided to give our prize money to those that we believe need it most.

is growing it. All one needs to do is to fill in a few forms for the Registrar of Companies and you will have a

“At some point both my cars were repossessed and I had to stand by helplessly and watch them go. But the beauty of being in business is that if you know what you are doing and are willing to work hard for it, results eventually begin to materialize…” What would be your advice to aspiring entrepreneurs and professionals? I would advise aspiring entrepreneurs that it is easy to start a business but the real challenge

company in whatever name you chose. Before doing that you need to think hard about your strategy because setting up a business without a clue of how to grow it will result in sure failure. You should also be motivated by the fact that you start a business on a clean slate without debt. Consequently, you are in a position to determine the kind of liabilities you are willing to incur. Another important point for aspiring entrepreneurs and professionals is that it is crucial to educate yourself in areas relevant to your business. One of the highlights of my journey as a businessman was studying for my Master’s degree. I had to read voraciously and a number of the books had been written by successful entrepreneurs from across the globe. The knowledge gained was invaluable in effecting the restructure of our company. The experience also inspired me to pursue a PhD which I am currently undertaking. Dumisani Hlatshwayo Image courtesy of N. Nkosi


MONEYGRAM BACKS THE INAUGURAL ZIMBABWE ACHIEVERS AWARDS

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oneyGram are excited to be the Headline Sponsor for the first-ever Zimbabwe Achievers Awards (ZAA) to be held in South Africa. MoneyGram has a successful continued association with the Zimbabwe and South Africa Achievers Awards in the UK and looks forward to working with the event’s organisers to make this the most anticipated event of the year for the community of Zimbabweans in South Africa. ZAA chairman and founder Conrad Mwanza, alongside the CEO of the South Africa edition Richard Moyo hosted a press briefing at a hotel in Sandton in mid-June 2014, to inform the public of the awards. “The inaugural Awards will be a unique opportunity for the estimated two million plus Zimbabweans in South Africa to celebrate their own successes. The objective of the awards is to recognize and celebrate the various individuals, companies and organizations that have kept the Zimbabwean flag flying high and have significantly contributed to the growth of their respective fields,” Mwanza said. Anton Luttig, the Regional Director of MoneyGram South and East Africa had the following remarks: “We are

absolutely delighted and excited to be involved in this inaugural event in South Africa. We have been associated with the event for quite a number of years [in the UK]. From our side, it was a natural extension in bringing these awards

to South Africa for obvious reasons. I think it is a good thing to recognise people who have excelled and we as MoneyGram are happy to be associated with an event of this nature.” Anton went on to highlight MoneyGram’s position as a leading money transfer company with over 300,000 agents in more than two hundred countries across the world. He also outlined the company’s broad network in Africa with offices in Johannesburg, Lagos and Morocco, with plans to bring services even closer to their customers on the continent. “We have over twenty thousand locations in Africa, with South Africa having over a thousand locations through our partners Bidvest Bank,

First National Bank and Standard Bank. We are appreciative of the patronage of our customers and involvement in these awards is one of the ways to say thank you to a key customer group. Sam Walton, an American entrepreneur, said ‘Nothing else can quite substitute for a few wellchosen, welltimed, sincere words of praise. They’re absolutely free—and worth a fortune.’ And with that in mind, it was actually quite natural for us to say yes to sponsoring this event and to say thank you to our customer.” He concluded by saying that in preparation for the event, the company and organisers were mindful of the migrant workers who have come to South Africa and have endured difficult challenges to become successful in contributing to the local society. The event is scheduled to be held on 15 November 2014 and further information is available on www.zimachievers.co.za MoneyGram International is a leading global payment services company whose mission is to provide consumers with affordable, reliable and convenient payment services.

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‘BENEATH THE DARKENING SKY’ by Majok Tulba

C

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hildren are often associated with innocence, but when they are not, it becomes disturbing. Imagine a young boy being forced to watch his parents tortured and murdered. He then walks for days through a dense forest heavily spotted with landmines, worrying about his own safety when he sees the flesh and blood of several young boys splatter across the trees and stain the soil when they accidentally step on them. He silently prays that his body is not next. In the camp he is repeatedly beaten, and forced to watch his 13-year-old brother get castrated. The boy eventually learns to shoot and kill, to rape and physically abuse. He has to learn this or be killed. He makes new friends in the forest and observes them violently kill and get killed. He becomes a soldier at the age of eleven. Majok Tulba, eloquently tells such an uncomfortable and disturbing story in his book “Beneath the Darkening Sky”. War and violence have plagued the African continent for many years, and they have evolved in both strategy and execution. This though should not be taken to imply that war and violence are unique to and characteristic of African states. They have been experienced beyond African borders, but this review analyses Majok Tulba’s text from an African context. The plight of child soldiers has gradually gained recognition to the point that its representation in African fiction can no longer be ignored, silenced or dismissed. Films such as War Witch, and fictional books like Half a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Adichie and Beats

of no Nation by Uzodinma Iweala, have centralized the themes of violence perpetrated by children in Africa, capturing their horrific and brutal lives. Child soldiers have unfortunately become characteristic of civil war. Ugandan Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA), who primarily used child soldiers, was notorious for acts of imaginative evil. More examples include Al Qaeda-allied rebels in Mali, Al- Shabaab in Somalia, the genocides in Rwanda, Congo, and Sierra Leone, and the current violence in South Sudan. Most of these aggressive rebel groups were and still are comprised of young boys and girls. Child soldiers. Yet few international and local media houses have thoroughly investigated and/ or documented their experiences. When Boko Haram kidnapped more than 250 girls from school early this year, the world was once again forced to pay attention, while vulnerable rural communities mobilized and armed themselves to protect their children and women from the militia. The above factual experiences of violence across Africa indicate the importance of documenting and telling the story of child soldiers, as unsettling as it may be. Majok Tulba tries to achieve this candidly in his debut novel which was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book Prize,

the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, and won the Sydney Morning Herald Young Novelists’ Award. As an author, Tulba understands the turmoil of child soldiers, having himself been exposed to it at an early age. Born in Pacong, a village by the waters of the White Nile in Southern Sudan, he narrowly missed out on being recruited as a child soldier because he was shorter than an AK-47. He later moved to Australia as a refugee where he now lives with his family and works as a filmmaker and CEO of a charity organization. Nonetheless, “Beneath the Darkening Sky” is not an autobiography; Majok Tulba creatively uses fiction to speculate on how his childhood would have turned out if he had been just an inch taller. Perhaps the author deliberately chooses fiction as a means of sharing truths of civil war in South Sudan, without dwelling on his own personal experiences and traumas. The story is disturbing but necessary. Told from the point of view of a child named Obinna, the narrative exposes the banality of violence, and forces imagined readers across the globe to vividly visualize the different layers of brutality and vulnerability endured in countries experiencing civil strife and insecurity.

Deeper themes such as early sexual development of both boys and girls, and sometimes crude and “The factual experiences of violence across violent means of exploring Africa indicate the importance of documenting and experimenting with their and telling the story of child soldiers, as sexuality are underscored. The unsettling as it may be. Majok Tulba tries to achieve this candidly in his debut novel which young girls, in particular, are was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Book subjected to domestic servitude, Prize, the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, forced labour, and sex slavery and won the Sydney Morning Herald Young through forced relationships with multiple militants. What Novelists’ Award...”


TAP Book Review

makes the story even darker is the seemingly final acceptance of their destiny as child soldiers or sex slaves possibly for survival. The author rapidly oscillates between innocence, guilt, resistance, anger, and hate; the vicious cycle a child’s psyche endures when recruited to be a child soldier. Despite the darkness, the author infuses into the narrative elements of humanity. Scenes of friendship, love, and solidarity, seem to thrive even in such depressingly destructive places. Obinna’s murky experiences are softened by an unexpected sense of humour, and a resilient childlike innocence. Survival is core to the story. The power of memory through

music, stories, and the process of remembering are also emphasized as subtle forms of resistance employed by some of the militants. Though one does walk around with a heavy heart after reading this book, the author does not leave the reader with a sense of despair and hopelessness. Rather, there is a profound feeling of empathy stemming from a realization that humans can be responsible for inhuman atrocities and pure evil, sometimes even if they don’t want to. There is no overarching framework of ethics and virtuousness associated with the story. There isn’t an obvious lesson to be learned at the end of the story. The author’s goal with this

text is clear: to tell the narrative of the child soldier, not to explain or justify it, but to simply convey it. WANJIRU WAICHIGO-NJOGU


UPDATE ON THE NEW 2014 IMMIGRATION REGULATIONS

T

he new immigration regulations introduced by the Department of Home Affairs (DHA) on 26th May 2014, have received a lot of coverage and sparked substantial debate on the same. Our last article in this magazine was based on the draft Regulations and our fears around the implementation have proved valid. Applicants and DHA staff alike have been caught unprepared, as have other actors and government departments with a role to play in the new rules.

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The DHA has come out strongly to say that it considers the regulations constitutional, technically correct, urgently necessary and morally based. The public are invited to comment where they feel otherwise. The implementation of this new law starts with promulgation by the President; training and general preparation to facilitate implementation will just have to follow with no transitional period. In line with the new regulations, all submissions within South Africa must be made through an outsourced service provider, VFS, who have also had considerable teething problems. They were unable to make appointments in June 2014, online checklists are still based on the old law and it takes forty-five minutes to capture data – assuming the system doesn’t kick you out. VFS appears to be a glorified postbox charging R1, 350 per application, over and above the DHA application fee. All applicants now need to appear in person, either at a VFS centre or an SA mission in their home country. Many embassies are however yet to receive the necessary equipment to capture biometric data. Although their offices are professional with the process taking about forty minutes,

Andreas Krensel

the interview requires preparation and thus we recommend the use of an immigration practitioner. VFS claim to have invested 1 billion rand to ensure that DHA processes all applications within thirty days whilst embassies will take sixty. Medical, radiological and police clearance requirements seem unchanged but the 3 month work visas for business, repairs, maintenance and internships now require an upfront application in applicant’s home country. Some embassies require submission in person in others while others allow postal submissions. Our clients who

“Some in the press are of the opinion that the new laws were pushed through by some security fanatics without any vision or understanding of their implications...” traditionally spend their summers in SA will continue to receive their 90 day visas on arrival. A further 90 day extension is still possible according to the new legislation, but applications must be submitted at least 60 days before expiry via VFS at a fee of R425 plus R1, 350 per person. Applicants seeking to apply for a Critical Skills Visa need to prove the skills and have 12 months to find employment. A comprehensive critical skill list was published in June 2014. The relevant professional body is mandated to confirm the skills but the documents required are unclear and differ from body to body. First time applicants as well as those seeking an extension for Inter Company Transfer Visas cannot be submit an application in SA meaning that current holders have to travel to their home countries to make the application. One could opt for

Dirk Meissner

a General Work permit but the employer needs to first undertake a diligent search for a local candidate and obtain a letter of certification from the Department of Labour (DOL) confirming this. DOL states that this will take thirty days but we expect delays. As for the Business Visa, the minimum investment from abroad has doubled from R2, 5 million to R5 million. Waivers or reductions of this amount are still possible, if the business is in the national interest and/ or falls into certain industrial sectors as determined by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) - 30 days processing time expected. The biggest challenge will be the Relative Visa. Much controversy surrounds the requirement of a two year minimum co-habitation period before such permit can even be applied for. Much confusion and different interpretations exist from embassy to embassy. Extensions are still possible within SA via VFS but it appears that new applications need to be submitted abroad and both partners must be interviewed. Applications for Permanent Residence (PR) permits under the retirement category can still be submitted in South Africa through VFS. However, in line with inflation, the requisite retirement income has increased from R20, 000 to R37, 000 per month of pension or capital income. The new regulations also increased the financial requirement for applying for PR under the ‘financially independent’ category from R7, 5 million to 12 million in net asset value with the ‘administration fee’ for the application increasing by R45, 000 to R120, 000. The holder of a temporary residence visa or a permanent residence permit who changes their address must inform DHA within 14 days of the change. Certain institutions such as


TAP Immigration:

banks, employment and real estate agents must report illegal foreigners to DHA or face a fine. Directive 9 requires all border officials to declare anybody without a valid permit in their passport leaving SA as undesirable for 1 to 5 years. This made front-page headlines in national newspapers and families have successfully sued the department for separation from loved ones. The directive remains despite some temporary relief. Applicants with pending applications must either leave SA on the day their current permit expires or wait until the new

permit is granted. There is an overstay appeal process to lift the ban in some instances, and we have had successful appeals processed within four weeks.

DHA, we get the feeling that there is a fundamental mistrust of foreigners in spite of governments stated policy of encouraging direct foreign investments.

This new set of laws is not in line with the governments National Development Program which seeks to promote economic development. Some in the press are of the opinion that the new laws were pushed through by some security fanatics without any vision or understanding of their implications. That said, when engaging high ranking officials within the

Andreas Krensel and Dirk Meissner from IBN Immigration Consultants – www.ibn.co.za


AFRICANS:

TAP Talk

THE AUTHORS OF OUR OWN MISFORTUNE

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f the price to Africa of progressing as a continent from third world to first world status was honesty, would we as Africans be willing to pay it? We are certainly able to, but would we? Looking around, evidence suggests that we wouldn’t.

expatriate. Here’s an excerpt: “There is no getting away from the fact that corruption in Nigeria has infested almost every aspect of life, work, and society … The corruption, theft, and graft can take many forms: falsifying a CV (I don’t mean enhancing, I mean pretending you’re a Lead Piping Engineer with twelve years’ experience when actually, until yesterday, you were a fisherman); selling positions in a company; stealing diesel from the storage tanks

Be that as it may, corruption scandals are in the media every other day. Just yesterday a woman on radio told a story of how a metro policewoman drove her to an ATM to make her get money for a bribe when all she wanted to do was pay her fine. We all know of the Limpopo Book Saga and the giant state owned entities that struggle to deliver products but pay their executives millions in bonuses. The list is endless.

Many of us complain about the crime rate in Africa and the fact that in most African countries, one needs to grease someone’s greedy paws before getting It is not only Nigeria and South Africa anything done. Despite the shared that are experiencing this. Most complaints and the many stories told African countries about how one are experiencing the official or the other “Are we as Africans, actively authoring a tragedy same thing to varying cleverly demanded instead of a song of victory by accepting corruption as degrees. I do not have payment before a way of life? How many of us are will to pull a Strive an answer to putting an doing the job they Masiyiwa and forfeit a multi-million dollar contract for end to corruption but I were employed our integrity?” would not be worth to do, are we my salt as an African willing to action Professional if I did not ask myself the you’re paid to protect; issuance of our complaints?Africa is one of question: Are we as Africans, actively false material certificates; deliberately the richest continents in the world authoring a tragedy instead of a song running down the country’s refining boasting massive deposits of oil, coal, of victory by accepting corruption as a capacity in order to partake in the manpower, diamonds, gold, tanzanite, way of life? Are we standing in the way lucrative import of fuels; falsifying iron, cobalt, uranium, copper, bauxite, of our own development? How many delivery notes of said refined fuels in silver, petroleum and cocoa beans, to of us are will to pull a Strive Masiyiwa order to receive greater government name but a few. It also boasts high levels and forfeit a multi-million subsidies; deliberately restricting the of unemployment, poverty and corrupt dollar contract for our country’s power generation capacity in politicians. How can such wealth and integrity? order to benefit from the importation poverty co-exist so peacefully? How of generators (which must be run on can that be? Why have we settled for imported fuel).” Nigeria is one of the being characters in someone else’s richest countries in Africa in terms story instead of penning our own? Is of natural and human resources. One it too hard to demand honesty from could easily argue that only thing that ourselves and our politicians? Is it too stops Nigeria from actively challenging hard to vote for the person who seems CHIONESO SAKUTUKWA South Africa for the most developed most likely to deliver on their campaign Twitter: @chiovictoria African Country slot is corruption. promises and to remove him when he doesn’t? Is it too hard to pay a traffic On the other hand, South Africa is fine rather than a bribe? Is it too hard arguably the most developed country to do right by ourselves? This train of in Africa boasting state of the art thought was sparked by Tim Newman’s infrastructure and overall development. account of his stint in Nigeria as an

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MY YEARS OF SELF / UNEMPLOYMENT

The Last Word

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ext month marks the fifth (more like eighth) year of my self (un)employment. Some of my peers think I’m a raving lunatic for wasting so much time qualifying as a chartered accountant (CA) then leaving it to chase a seemingly far-fetched dream, while others seem to think I live a rock star life. Well, here’s my story. In 2006, I was an investment banker based in Cape Town with a

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lovely girlfriend, great colleagues, great bosses, nice home, nice car, decent salary and equity in a blue chip company. Life was good. But I realized that I was about to hit my professional ceiling in Cape Town and Johannesburg was calling. As a “Black CA” the world was my oyster, but in spite of all the attractive employment offers, I was still undecided and my soul was restless. I blame my early teens because it was then that I developed the love of being financially independent. Pocket money was for the birds; I started off selling personalized stationery to relatives, learnt how to cut my mates hair, and, bought a cheap restringing machine and started restringing racquets at school. I also waited tables and worked in the local supermarket - all so I could buy my 1litre of Ultra Mel custard when I wanted to. One day, a random conversation with an old university ‘friend’ culminated in my buying 26% of a dream. We started off well, taking our business’ R0 revenue to a few million in year 1, more in year 2 and even more in year 3 before I left. When money is involved and you’re naïve in business, things don’t turn out the way you thought w a s agreed. T h e business

had grown substantially but the relationship was not the same. It didn’t feel like the place for me anymore. One would think 26% of a company turning millions would be quite lucrative. No such luck. In July 2009, my solo adventure began. My mindset was, (and still is) to “create a job not take a job”. I had a new girlfriend - a beautiful black German drop top called Snow White which I boarded to Cape Town to form a new businesswith a good friend. Eight months later, I headed back to Johannesburg when plans to set up ZYNC’s (Zulfiq and Yaw iNCorporated) fell through. Fortunately, through previous employers and colleagues I’ve been able to get some contract work and gained varied experience such as setting up a bank in Ghana, stone quarrying, sustainability reporting, energy conservation and the art of operating smartly. The first four years were fun but rough; I had no salary and sold Snow White for a little run around car. I don’t know where the next business win will come from, but even though I’m not getting any younger, there are fewer places I would rather be.

“If you believe you want to do your own thing, I’d strongly recommend it. But if you think it will take two years, cater for five...” I am blessed to own my time. I’ve travelled extensively and I’m still able to assist my family when


needed. I feel very fortunate to be learning how to live within my means and also not to live for others. I wasn’t going to be wealthy working for someone. I may well never be wealthy working for myself either, but what I don’t have is the stress of worrying whether my job is secure (because I know it isn’t). I am yet to directly create the job I hoped to though I may have done so indirectly through all the deals presented to investment committees. If you believe you want to do your own thing, I’d

strongly recommend it. But if you think it will take two years, cater for five. So am I successful? Man, those are other

“In 2006, I was an investment banker based in Cape Town with a lovely girlfriend, great colleagues, great bosses, nice home, nice car, decent salary and equity in a blue chip company. Life was good. But my soul was restless...” people’s concerns. Mine is waking up in the morning with a grateful heart for

the opportunity to live like I do, hoping one day the golden goose will be found. I have failed and will continue to fail, but as long as we live to tell the tale with a smile what more can one ask? YAW PEPRAH Twitter - @yawzie


David Barnard When passion meet activism

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he journey of David Barnard in the social justice and environmental sectors is best described by the phrase ‘walking the talk’. The “ultra” athlete participates in extrememarathons and multi-stage, 5 to 7 day extreme desert races around the world to raise funds and awareness in support of various NGOs and social causes. His next big running challenge is the “Last Desert Race”, 250km through the snow of Antarctica in November 2014 in support of the work of Greenpeace Africa. The upcoming race is exciting not only to David but also to Greenpeace Africa. Through the ‘Last Desert Race’, David Barnard will be fundraising, and building awareness about Greenpeace Africa’s campaigns with a mission to highlight the environmental and social injustices that the continent faces. Climate change, deforestation and overfishing are some of the most pressing challenges of our time, with far reaching implications

on livelihoods of millions of people around Africa. The need for more global awareness, cooperation and urgent action is therefore critical. By running this race, David and the Greenpeace Africa team aim to raise R 250 000 to help fight these challenges. David has completed a total of six races in the recent past among them the 220km Namib Desert Challenge in March 2012 in Namibia and 220km Ultra Africa Race in November 2013 in Burkina Faso. Besides raising funds for social causes, David is the Vice-President of TechSoup Global, the largest nonprofit provider of technology assistance services to nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) and libraries worldwide. He was previously the Executive Director of the Southern African NGO Network (SANGONeT). Just like David, we can all play a part. Join David Barnard on this journey and become a Greenpeace Africa member today or donate to this project. By becoming a member, you will

enable Greenpeace Africa to investigate, campaign, and lobby for a sustainable balance between humans and the environment. Your support makes it possible for Greenpeace to expose environmental abuses, raise awareness to protect our oceans, forests, and our climate and put an end to environmental crimes. Greenpeace only relies on donations from generous individuals to carry out its work. In order to remain independent, Greenpeace does not accept funding from governments, corporations or political parties. The difference starts with you, become a member of Greenpeace Africa today.

Follow us on twitter @GreenpeaceAfric Like our facebook page Greenpeace Africa or visit our website on www.greenpeace.org/africa/en/

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More pics available on www.facebook.com/africanpro

TAP Social

AFRICAN PROFESSIONAL WOMEN’S BREAKFAST 1 - Event MC Mumbi Odame 2 - Financial planning presentation from Mirinda Laurens of Consolidated Financial Planning 3 - Featured speaker Rudo Kwaramba, Regional CEO of World Vision 4 - Featured speaker Head of Communication from Greenpeace Fiona Musana 5 - Dr. Muchindu arriving at the venue 6 - Paying attention

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TAP Social

AFRICAN PROFESSIONAL WOMEN’S BREAKFAST 1 - Featured Speaker Nanzala Mwaura of IPSOS Synovate 2 - Featured Speaker Ophelia Akosah-Bempah of Anglo-gold Ashanti 3 - Featured Speaker Polo Radebe CEO of Identity Partners 4 - Say cheese! 5 - Obaasima Ghanaian Social Club 6 - Grand prize quiz winner Ellaine Pasi

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TAP Social

AFRICAN PROFESSIONAL WOMEN’S BREAKFAST 1 - Making comments 2 - Quiz time 3 - Some attendees share a light moment 4 - Meryl Pottier and Liz Njoroge 5 - Massages from touch of passion 6 - Deputy Editor Leah Maina with the vote of thanks

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The African Professional Magazine Issue 16  
The African Professional Magazine Issue 16  

We present Issue 16 of The African Professional featuring Greenpeace Africa CEO Michael Obrien-Onyeka and other high profile professionals f...