Billionaire sets out to change lives of South Africa’s farmers, workers


Billionaire businessman Patrice Motsepe, one of South Africa’s richest people has launched a fund to provide “thousands of jobs over a few years”.

This is his second big initiative announcement in a few weeks.

Motsepe, who is the executive chairperson of mining group African Rainbow Minerals, also recently announced he was involved in setting up another fund to help emerging black farmers.

This week, the philanthropist announced The Motsepe Foundation has partnered with 33 religious and faith-based organisations to start the job creation fund to boost community-based sustainable job-creating initiatives.

Asked why the fund had not opted to partner with government, Motsepe said: “I don’t like working with government.”

He cited government’s bureaucratic red tape as an obstacle. “Government is critically important but they waste time and decisions don’t get taken quickly and they have meetings upon meetings.”

Launching the fund in Sandton this week, Motsepe, who is the fund’s chairperson, said it would provide “thousands of jobs over a few years” and that other funders and donors were welcome to contribute.

Speaking to City Press on the sideline of the event, Precious Moloi-Motsepe, co-founder of the foundation, said both companies and non-profit organisations would be allowed to apply for funding.

“The important thing is that the businesses that are brought to us are not self-enriching projects. “We need to see that you will be creating jobs,” she said.

“As a foundation, we have no profit motive, so we are putting seed capital and hoping other philanthropists will also come and contribute,” she said.

Motsepe recently also announced that he was involved in setting up another fund to help emerging black farmers.

According to BusinessLive, Motsepe announced the fund at the African Farmers Association of SA (Afasa) agribusiness transformation conference, held in Bloemfontein earlier this month.

He said that the fund would focus on assisting those in agriculture, agribusiness and related industries.

“We need black farmers to be part of sustainable, commercially viable and profitable enterprises. When we do that we will build a future for all of our people.” (Source: News24)