Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Sipho Pityana

Sipho Pityana

AngloGold Ashanti

IN one corner of the ring, we have President Jacob Zuma and his cronies. In the other, black leaders like Sipho Pityana. The former exile and ANC stalwart-turned-businessman has become one of the ruling party’s most prominent critics, although it’s fairer to say this criticism is levelled firmly at the ANC’s leaders – not the organisation itself. He started the Save South Africa movement in late 2016, shortly after going head-to-head with deputy mines minister Godfrey Oliphant at the Joburg Indaba. Immediately after a warning from Oliphant that he did not want to hear criticism of the government, Pityana described Zuma as the “sponsor-in-chief of corruption” and called on him to step down. The fury he has aroused among Zuma’s faithful followers has not subdued him; not in the least. At this year’s Joburg Indaba he called mineral resources minister Mosebenzi Zwane a “crook and a joker”, and in another interview, he took aim at finance minister Malusi Gigaba, describing him as lacking credibility. Pityana is insistent that AngloGold’s behaviour has to be “unimpeachable” and it demands the same from the group’s partners in the private sector, labour and government as a pre-requisite for attracting investment to South Africa.

LIFE OF SIPHO

Pityana served as directors-general of labour and foreign affairs before moving into business, joining Nedcor in 2002 and starting an advisory firm soon after with a partner. Pityana, who describes himself as a son of the Eastern Cape, was one-time owner of soccer team Bay United.