Name and shame
LAST YEAR – at the release of the Employment Equity Commission’s employment equity statistics that revealed dismal figures – Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana used the opportunity to “name and shame” companies in an effort to force them to comply with the law.
But many lost sight of the principle and jumped on the bandwagon to cast blame
on Mdladlana’s tactics, despite companies failing to adhere to employment equity legislation.
Be that as it may, there’s hardly a murmur concerning some JSElisted companies such as JD Group for remaining lily white at board and management level. I don't think it’s fair either to punt Public Investment Corporation CEO Brian Molefe as a Government hit man after taking Barloworld’s board to task for lack of transformation at the company and “taking a close look” at JD Group. However, investors abdicate their responsibility to ensure that there’s a speedy acceleration of transformation in SA’s economy and the labour market. All of that doesn’t bode well for transformation.
In fact, shareholders, stakeholders, analysts and the media must lead the way to prod companies to achieve acceptable levels of equity representation on their boards. Likewise, the black economic empowerment Codes of Good Practice being passed into law, the Trade & Industry Department must also name and shame companies that fail to do what needs to be done in the context of empowerment.