Prospering in SA Business ,
Par t 2 of 6.
Understand the country’s political framework:
South Africa has an ugly past. For several centuries the country has been under authoritarian and domineering regimes which excluded the black majority citizens of the country. To this extent South Africa is still ‘ two countries in one’. The country is undergoing through a transition period both politically, socially, religiously and across all other sectors.
Since 1994 the country adopted a democratic dispensation which allows democratic elections to take place every 5 years. The constitution has a justiciable bill of rights that guarantees a series of individual rights , corporate rights and statutory rights. Included in the constitution is the guarantee to the independent judiciary. There is freedom of expression that allows all to start and form other political parties to the exclusion of the current political parties. It is important to quote the provisions of the preamble as it sets out the tone of the constitution thus…
“…We therefore through our freely elected representatives , adopt this constitution as the supreme law of the republic so as to heal the divisions of the past and establish a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights;
Lay the foundations for a democratic and open society in which government is based on the will of the people and every citizen is equally protected by law; Improve the quality of life of all citizens and free the potential of each person…”
The constitution is the supreme law of the land. This constitution is ‘managed’ by an independent judiciary. This position is a source of relief to any potential investor who intends to invest their monies as all their rights and duties will be subject to scrutiny that is ‘managed’ by an independent judiciary.
The country is divided into 9 provinces thus Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Northern cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Free State, Mpumalanga, North West, Gauteng and Northern Cape. There are different cultural dynamics that are at play in each of these 9 provinces . To this extent it is important for one to understand the cultural dynamics that are at play in a specific province that one intends to operate. It can be stated without any doubt that South Africa is not a homogenous country for now. It is a country that is ‘united in its diversity’… Of course there are similarities in some isolated instances. A common trend though is that people who live in a specific province tend to share a very similar and common cultural and traditional practices except for one province which is in Gauteng.