Release Date: 07 February, 2022

Press Release: WBS partners with BMF to advance leadership transformation in South Africa

Wits Business School (WBS) has signed a partnership agreement with the Black Management Forum (BMF) which both parties have described as a “historic moment”.

Welcoming the attendees at a signing ceremony held at WBS, Professor Maurice Radebe, Head and Director of WBS, paid tribute to the 46-year-old legacy of the BMF in creating a nurturing environment for young black business leaders both during and post-apartheid.

“The BMF has played a critical role in South Africa over the decades in nurturing a culture of excellence among black managers and leaders. This partnership represents a meeting of minds as we both strive towards nurturing and mentoring the next generation of leaders, and by so doing honouring the vision of founding fathers of the BMF,” he said.

The BMF, founded in 1976 as a support group to address the challenges or corporate structures in South Africa, now stands for the development and empowerment of managerial leadership in advancing socio-economic transformation.

In his address, president of the BMF Mr Andile Nomlala, reflected on the importance for executive and management education to focus on transformation as well as identifying economic interventions to take South Africa out of the “quagmire” it finds itself in.

He referred to the recent release of the first Zondo Commission reports as a background to the need for business leaders to move the country forward.

“At BMF we are no longer looking at a narrow agenda of transformation in corporate South Africa alone, we now have a bigger responsibility of looking at transformation in the broader South African context. We now need to move forward with a critical mass of capable, skilled, well-equipped, well-grounded and ethical leaders, rather than drown in politically driven cadre deployment.

“The bigger vision of the BMF is now to become the problem solvers, and this is why we have chosen to forge a long-lasting partnership with Wits Business School.”

The agreement will see the two organisations collaborate on a bursary scheme to grant access to deserving BMF members to enrol for a Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration (PDBA) or a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) at WBS. 

In addition, WBS and the BMF will co-design a short Executive Education course, as well as a series of masterclasses, with a strong emphasis on leadership transformation and ethics for the benefit of BMF members.

“This historic agreement combines the vision that the leadership at BMF has created over the years with the reputation and skills capacity at Wits Business School,” said Nomlala. “Wits has given us this opportunity and we will take it with both hands. We see this partnership as a catalyst for lasting change in our country.”

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Alison Gaylard |

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