Is corporate punishment based on your skin colour?


Brian Mhlanga | Lecturer | Leadership Development Partitioner| DEI Facilitator | Omanga Consulting | mail me |

Living in South Africa, racism is at the centre of our history and day to day experiences. We hope that currently, the colour of our skin won’t affect how we are treated but, it’s in all our faces, constantly, even in spaces where your merit should be enough but here, we are again, being white and being wrong is sneezed at but being black and being wrong is punishable by ‘death’.

Outgoing University of Cape Town Vice-Chancellor Mamokgethi Phakeng has been hung out to dry due to allegations of mismanagement of funds and bullying to name a few. Since this is an ongoing case, we should be treating her as innocent until proven guilty but it’s clear that it’s the complete opposite.

Public opinion is that she deserves to be fed to the wolves, but others would argue that her suspension is an attack on in her words “I’m a change maker, I rattled the cage of gender discriminators”. Is it too far-fetched to maybe assume that UCT is a racist organisation that is trying to find a way to kick her out because she is a black woman who isn’t afraid to demand change?

We should be allowing the law to take its course and give her the support that is given to other people in high positions going through scrutiny, I believe that if she was a white male the issue would not be as big, let alone discussed in public.

Let’s look at the outgoing CEO Andre Marinus de Ruyter, no one can deny that

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Read the full article by Brian Mhlanga, Lecturer, Leadership Development Partitioner and DEI Facilitator, Omanga Consultingas well as a host of other topical management articles written by professionals, consultants and academics in the April/May 2023 edition of BusinessBrief.

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