Business Leadership SA (BLSA) has unexpectedly axed its entire communication unit, citing operational reasons. Business Day understands that five employees — Business Day columnist John Dludlu, former Financial Mail journalist Thebe Mabanga, entrepreneur Sharmayne Venkatsamy and two administrators — were told last Friday that their services had been terminated "with immediate effect". The contract of their boss, Themba Maseko, which was supposed to expire on Tuesday, was not renewed and he also left on Friday. Neither BLSA nor the axed workers were prepared to explain why the organisation took such a drastic step at such short notice. BLSA, which represents the CEOs of the largest companies in SA and falls under the apex organisation Business Unity SA (Busa), engages key players, including civil society and labour, to facilitate and promote dialogue with the government and other stakeholders. 'Operational decision' "There was nothing sinister or untoward about it. It was just a norm...

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