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Patricia de Lille: “Know the difference between right and wrong.”
2010-03-04

From the left are: Jeanie Britz, MBA student; Garth Botha, MBA student; Ms De Lille; Prof. Tienie Crous, Dean: Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences at the UFS; and Prof. Helena van Zyl, Director: School of Management at the UFS.
Photo: Stephen Collett


Ms Patricia de Lille, the Leader of the Independent Democrats, recently paid a visit to the School of Management at the University of the Free State (UFS). She spoke to students in the MBA programme about the leadership challenges South African business leaders are facing.

Ms De Lille voiced her opinion on many current issues, such as corruption. “Business is standing back with its arms folded and leaving everything to government. In fact, business is doing something very similar to what it was doing during apartheid,” she said.

She added that a business leader and his or her business could be found behind every corrupt transaction. “It is a relationship involving more than one party. If someone accepts a bribe, someone else is paying a bribe,” she said.

Ms De Lille lashed out at business leaders who received extravagant salaries and bonuses even after they had been asked to leave the company. “South Africa needs a new generation of business leaders that truly know the difference between right and wrong,” she pointed out. “And it’s wrong to demand the rest of your contract’s money and bonus after you have been fired because you obviously didn’t do your work.”

Ms De Lille also focused on the role that South African business played. Business should engage with the government to identify problems and find solutions to speed up transformation. “We need young entrepreneurs that are patriotic and think out of the box,” she said.

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