Friday, November 25, 2011

Meal for Six - Nando's gets it right, AGAIN

If you visit South Africa, there is only one fast-food place you need to add to your list: Nando's and not only for their wonderful grilled chicken, but because they know how to make you smile - from advert (below!) to website to in-store posters. Chicken going viral. Well done, Nando's! Again... You GET us...

Dark Day for our Democracy on #BlackTuesday

This was a disturbing week in South Africa - filled with high drama as our democratically elected government crossed a line on 22 November 2011 (now termed) 'Black Tuesday'. It is a stark political mirror for some - of an economic disaster on 29 October 1929 with the same tag - when Wall Street crashed. It is said that many Members of Parliament failed South Africa and civil society this week, and the Press Club called for another dark Tuesday, and Wednesday, and Monday and every day...

With freedom of the press one of the corner stones of a democracy, it came as a surprise that the African National Congress actually voted FOR the controversial Protection of State Information Bill - called by most a 'draconian secrecy bill' at odds with the South African Constitution. "It takes us back to the apartheid-era restrictions on free speech" - Noel Katuwa (Amnesty International). Courtesy cartoonist Zapiro

There is an erosion of principled leadership in South Africa - we have experienced it this year at many levels, and just recently again in business. If a principled decision that would benefit many is held hostage by the narrow self-interest and gain of an individual in power, it is time for ethical determination and moral stamina. Corruption, defined as 'the action of making someone morally depraved or the state of being so' causes paranoia and consternation among the ranks. Indecision. Lack of Leadership. Hiding in the Shadows after questionable action. Refusal to take responsibility or respecting the dignity of another. All the same.

In a chilling account by Dr Lucas Ntyinyana an article saw the light this week: "The ANC has become a monster" and indeed, in a state of ill-disguised greed and personal enrichment, I can not help but wonder: How could we get this so wrong? Or am I missing something... 

One thing is certain for me, I would not call it Black Tuesday or Black any day; but rather Dark Tuesday... it was bound to become a racial issue. After all, it is not the color of the day that matters, it is the fact that we had such a day at all! Our Constitution enshrines and protects the free flow of information between citizens, and from our government to our citizens", says the Helen Suzman Foundation when it called the Bill a 'low point in South Africa's transition to democracy' (note the wording). Yes, it was the day our freedom fighters turned freedom takers... and one has to ask: WHY?

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