Should the bad be killed?

Tebogo Naledi, MD of Old Mutual Investment Group gave a presentation at the Financial Mail Green Economy Conference, which I was fortunate enough to attend a few weeks ago. Tebogo talked about the idea that we have come to a point as a society where we have “good” and “bad” companies and how he believes it is unproductive to punish the “bad” companies.

These ‘bad’ companies still employ tens of thousands of people while genuinely contributing to the economic output of our nation. Sasol is one of these companies. I have family that has a sizable portion of their assets invested in Secunda which makes me understand this probably more than most.

What would it mean for these “bad” companies to get punished and close down? No more Lake Umuzi. No more Secunda! No more Sasolburg! No more mining towns, and if they were punished a bit earlier, Johannesburg would have looked a lot different.

Don’t get me wrong. These companies will have to change if we still want to breathe without oxygen tanks somewhere in the future or have a tree here or there.

Yet change does not happen through exclusion. It never has.

The Reverend does not stand at the church door and block everyone who is not a perfect Christian. The church would be completely empty!

So what can we do?

We can start by being led by values showing there is a way and inviting everybody to join in on this path.

A chain is only strong as its weakest link, not the few strong ones.

Just a Mad idea on this Mad Monday.

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