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We will rebuild

by | Jul, 2021

The Toyota Institute for Manufacturing Studies (TWIMS) joins together with citizens of South Africa and the community of business owners and their staff to condemn the violence and looting that has affected most of KwaZulu-Natal, and some of Gauteng, in recent days. At a time when the country has been struggling with the ongoing impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and deep socio-economic challenges, these events are a body blow to our society. Building back from this will take incredible levels of hard work by all of us across our society. After all, not only have communities seen their already precarious security and livelihoods damaged, but the complex networks of production, distribution and retail eco-systems, that are so essential in any functioning society, have in many areas been laid to waste.

At this time we are particularly mindful of those of our stakeholders, our GIBS PGDip/MBA students, and the many firms we work with. Many have lost not only facilities, equipment and stock worth billions of rands, but have also had to confront terrible threats to the lives of their colleagues, families and friends. We are hopeful that the emerging signs of a lessening of the violence are signalling the end of this wanton destruction. We will nonetheless remain vigilant with our stakeholders as the region remains on something of a knife-edge.

As an Institute striving to serve the development interests of this broad manufacturing eco-system, in South Africa and across the African continent, we and our wider TWIMS community remain determined to play our part in supporting the very difficult recovery. We will work with others to explore ways in which we can all contribute to a fair and just society under the rule-of-law as envisaged in the South African constitution. We are grateful to those that have mobilised across business areas and neighbourhoods to help prevent further destruction, injury and the loss of life. We call on all societal stakeholders, and in particular government at all levels, to place the people of our country and continent at the heart of their decisions. As a matter of urgency we need to see a broad front of stakeholders acting with speed to attend to critical recovery issues of the restoration of law and order and the supply of essential goods and services. Beyond this much work has to be done to restore the confidence of all of us living in South Africa and those working to build an economy that can sustain us into the future. TWIMS will work with others in support of these efforts.

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