‘Let’s take the economy back’

Molefe Sompane, chairperson of Man Up Mzansi

Man Up Mzansi, an NPO which focuses on community development, will be hosting the Botshabelo Township Economy Talk and Employability Summit at Sechaba Mahobe Library in E-Section on 7 and 8 March 2019. The theme of the summit is “Bring back our dignity”.

Molefe Sompane, chairperson of Man Up Mzansi, said his organisation has organised the summit to start a dialogue on how to put the township economy back into the hands of the locals. “It has been painful to me for a long time to realise that we have become the consumers who only take our money to foreign shopowners. I believe that people who grew up in Botshabelo during 1980s will recall that the economy used to be in black hands. If these people have ideas for discussion, they should be part of the meeting.”

Sompane said the meeting is for everyone, especially small business owners and the youth who want to change the status quo.

“Botshabelo turns 40 this year. The next 40 years begin now with us ensuring that factory buildings are leased to the locals who are willing to open businesses and create jobs.

“We also want the Free State Development Corporation, which took over Botshabelo’s buildings, to give back to the community by ensuring that it trains and funds our local businesses.”

During the summit there will be interaction between locals and representatives of the Ethiopian community in South Africa, who will be sharing their success recipe.

“People will also be able sign a pledge to become ambassadors to urge the entire community to support local businesses through our #SupportBlackBusiness.” – Lebakeng Nkabi