Council slams Mophatlane exit at BCX - TechCentral

Council slams Mophatlane exit at BCX

Isaac Mophatlane

The Black Business Council has lashed out at Telkom over the departure of BCX (formerly Business Connexion) CEO Isaac Mophatlane, accusing the telecommunications operator of “an attack on black excellence”.

Telkom said on Sunday that Mophatlane had resigned and that his last day was last Friday, 28 April. The development was unexpected, with Mophatlane having been appointed as CEO of the merged Business Connexion and Telkom Business units less than a year ago.

Mophatlane founded BCX with his twin brother, Benjamin Mophatlane, who passed away in 2014. He took the reins as CEO of the business following his brother’s death.

Telkom said in an e-mail to TechCentral on Sunday that although Mophatlane had resigned, he would continue to consult to the group’s CEO, Sipho Maseko, for three months “to ensure a seamless transition”. Ian Russell was named as Mophatlane successor as BCX CEO.

But the Black Business Council has now claimed that Mophatlane, far from resigning, was forced out. “There’s no magic solution to avoid the hurt feelings, the tension [and]the discomfort this development has caused among our members,” said council chairman Sello Rasethaba.

“This is an attack on black excellence. The government, as a major shareholder in Telkom, should bow its head in shame to allow chairman Jabu Mabuza and Maseko to erode confidence in black professionals and to leave black children without a heritage of entrepreneurial success,” Rasethaba said in a statement.

The council hit out at Telkom for not appointing a black professional to replace Mophatlane. “Mabuza and Maseko preferred to replace Mophatlane with a white man. It is a demonstration that they do not care about black economic empowerment. They are encouraging the exodus of black executives from Telkom,” he said.

“The [council]is appealing to Mabuza and Maseko to believe in black excellence and stop the self-hatred, stop the exodus of black professionals from Telkom and restore Telkom to its former glory as a champion of black economic empowerment.”

Telkom has been asked to comment on the council’s allegations.  — © 2017 NewsCentral Media


  1. I am sure Isaac Mophatlane will continue to contribute to Black
    Excellence and inject entrepreneurial spirit into new and young
    ventures. Their (the twins) story is an excellent one and can help young
    South Africans grow. Let’s hope we do not loose his mentorship.

    the BBC outrage, Let’s not take it at face value but rather look at he
    facts in the matter. Is this an interim measure with black talent being
    grown internally to fill she shoes in the medium term? If so it is a
    good thing as our company has shown that black talent do not want to be
    rushed into senior positions if they do not feel ready to take the lead.

    pray that we do not have these conversations in future as it continues
    to do damage. We should fight racism in all areas of life.

  2. black talent has been grown internally for the last 20 years or at least that’s the story.

  3. Sorry I have been waiting now for 3 months for telkom to fix a ADSL line they put in 3 months ago and still is not working, so I personally think there is no excellence in Telkom. Still have to pay AfriHost for the last 3 months. And there is nowhere to complain, maybe with Twitter I will come right!

  4. Greg Mahlknecht on

    Isaac worked for 21 years at that company. His brother and co-founder died, and he’s now answering to higher-ups. I’m sure his heart wasn’t in it any more – he doesn’t need to work, so probably quit to enjoy his life.

  5. Magomarele Gomi Thobejane on

    I’m sure he quit with a fat handshake, just like what happened in MTN when we were told Sifiso Dabengwa resigned on his own volition, when in fact he was shafted out, and awarded R48m, after plunging the company in a record breaking fine of R60 billion in Nigeria. Lies, lies, and more lies.

  6. Matt Blewett on

    Isaac Mophatlane represents one of SA’s finest examples of a “Black Industrialist” and true Tech Entrepreneur. He is everything that we can hope for in the transformation of SA’s economy. As someone who worked closely with Isaac for over 15 years I have the utmost respect for his experience, expertise and most importantly his value system. Clearly this is a loss for Telkom but Isaac and his inspiring story will not be lost for SA. Not for so long as good men and women recognise true talent in SA.

  7. John Belyeu on

    I just want to know if the Black Business Council actually interviewed or talked to Mr. Mophatlane before going off on this tirade?

  8. William Stucke on

    It’s truly sad that some people chose to reduce everything to race, and assume that there are no more complex issues at play.

  9. Dear Opperman. Has your ADSL line been fixed? If not, may I help report the matter. I work for Telkom.

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