Three years ago I assumed the role of president of Business Unity SA (Busa). I served my term at a time that required clarity of purpose. We were emerging from the ravaging era of state capture, when some in business were knee-deep in corrupt and unethical practices. There was an air of expectation that, under the leadership of President Cyril Ramaphosa, with the rhetoric of the “new dawn”, a nation committed to honouring its historic mission of building an equitable society was back on course.

As the business community we had to assert our commitment to ethical leadership and an inclusive growth agenda that does not reproduce the country’s historical patterns of inequalities. Importantly, we had to ensure the principles of collaboration with our social partners were more than just about securing the best deal for business but would also improve the prospects for sustainable, transformative development. We had to earn a place as a credible voice at the table, even when others ...

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