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Major leadership summit set to grip the port city of Durban

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By Ashok Ramsarup :: American renowned leader, visionary, thought-thinker and entrepreneur – Bishop T.D. Jakes — will be jetting to the port city of Durban in South Africa next month to attend the Durban International Convention Centre (ICC) Leadership Summit 2019.  This comes in the backdrop of the country’s political scenario, corruption, economic and unemployment challenges since the dawn of democracy.

Religious leaders from various faiths, captains of industry, government and civil society will be addressing various issues of national importance and expected to find and develop new strategies across the length and breadth of the country.

At the launch of the Leadership Summit, ICC Chief Executive Officer Lindiwe Rakharebe strongly believed that the dialogue would be a catalyst for change.  Rakharebe hoped thesummit would make a difference and address the economic and social challenges South Africa was currently facing.

The ICC had been important driver in contributing to the country’s Gross Domestic Product.  It contributed more than 46-billion Rand to the country’s fiscus and helped to provide 113 800 in the port city. Ultimately this led to the ICC being the leading international events destination in the world since opening its doors in 1997.  The ICC was officially opened by President Nelson Mandela, who was sworn in as the country’s first black president.

Rakharebe said the country was facing a leadership crisis that led to the ICC dwelling on the importance of leadership that had a vision and committed to confront the many challenges that faces the nation.

She said: “Bishop Jakes will be sharing the stage with diverse and prominent speakers, including local church leadership in brainstorming various topics, including ethical leadership, trans-generational leadership, women in leadership, progressive leadership and leading in difficult times.

“I am quite vocal that leaders must lead with integrity and maintain high levels of interest, passion and care for the people they serves.  Our actions as leaders directly contribute to a legacy of the current leadership generation which will measure of the contribution,’’ said Rakharebe.

She quoted Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng that “ethnical leadership is not an option but a national imperative because when you are a leader you have the authority to influence those that you lead and it is what you do that largely determines what those who follow you are likely to do”.

Bishop Vusi Dube of the eThekwini Community Church said leaders must become the voice of the people and they must be able to follow the legacy of Nelson Mandela who set a high standard in ensuring peace and democracy in the rainbow nation.

Bishop Dube said the Rwanda genocide was an eye-opener as that country brought hope to people in Africa that a strong leadership could bring about a meaningful change.   He quoted American church leader and civil rights activist Martin Luther King whose voice resonates around the world today.  “I believe leaders can emulate Martin Luther King and use the leadership forum to create a stable society,” he said.

Radio and Television personality, preacher, and business woman Zanele Mbokazi said nation building, social cohesion and moral regeneration were the key pillars for sustainable development.  Mbokazi said South Africa was yearning for peace, stability and prosperity. “I am hoping leaders emerge to build a unified South Africa and believe in ourselves to make a difference,” she added.

ICC Marketing , Sales, and Events Director – Scott Langley  – expressed his excitement at this event as   as it signifies the next phase of the Durban ICC’s evolution as Africa’s leading convention centre. Langley said, for the past two decades they  were honoured to be the host venue of many significant international events, and they had seen  the amazing impact which events could have society.

“Now we are drawing our collective events experience and using this magnificent facility to initiate and develop meaningful events which can contribute positively to our communities and to society at large.

“This event is a great opportunity for organisations to invest in their leadership teams. We would love to see businesses sending their entire management teams to the event, for government leaders to attend this event as groups and for churches to invest in their pastors by sponsoring them to attendthe Leadership Summit,” added Langley.

Ashok Ramsarup is award-winning senior journalist of South Africa 🇿🇦

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