A Legacy of Perseverance
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In 1964, amidst a climate of oppression and intimidation, arose an entity that would become a giant of Black South African empowerment -- the National African Federated Chamber of Commerce & Industry (NAFCOC).
In the 1940s, with the need for an organisation for informal black traders, the Orlando Traders Association was formed. However it was not until, after the Sharpeville uprisings, that NAFCOC was formed despite vehement objections by the government to the formation of a multi-ethnic chamber of commerce in South Africa.
NAFCOC, as the voice of black business, became a vehicle for economic prosperity for a generation relegated to the sidelines of economic development by an unjust apartheid government. Black people were so marginalised that they were limited to operating subsistence-type businesses outside the mainstream of the economy.
It was only in 1979 that black businesses were allowed to operate in designated black areas only, due to concerted efforts by NAFCOC. At the very core of NAFCOC's existence is the creed "Rise in Faith" and this most certainly held true for those pioneering, founding fathers of NAFCOC. They held out for and held onto a vision where one day Black people would enter the mainstream of the economy of the country.
This book is not just a celebration of 50 years of NAFCOC. It is also tracks the fight for political and economic freedom, long before the reality of a democratic government in 1994. It tells how NAFCOC enabled black business; how black business not only survived, but thrived against a backdrop of an unequal racist society.
There are not many organisations that remain standing after 50 years -- that NAFCOC has not only managed to do this, but continues to play a significant role for a new generation of black businessmen and women assures it of a continued relevance.
About the author
Kwandiwe Kondlo is currently a Professor in the Programme on Leadership for Emerging Economies in the faculty of Management at the University of Johannesburg. He was previously the Director of the Centre for Africa Studies at the University of the Free State. Before that he was the Executive Director of the Democracy and Governance Programme at the Human Science Research Council. He holds an MA from the University of Cape Town and a D.Litt et Phil(PhD) from the University of Johannesburg. He is the author and editor of several books including Perspectives on Thought Leadership for Africa's Renewal (2013), Africa in Focus - Governance in the 21st Century (2011) and The Zuma Administration; Critical Challenges (2010) as well as articles published in various journals.
Author Kwandiwe Kondlo
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