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Has the Covid-19 pandemic given our country an opportunity to reimagine, innovate and do things differently? At a time of great necessity, the resilience and ingenuity of South Africans has been tested. While the challenges of slow government reform, corruption, inequality, mass unemployment, a failing education system, an energy crisis, and climate challenges remain a priority, it is important to reflect on the lessons we have learned since the Covid-19 virus arrived and demanded rapid change.

This year, The Directors Event – SA’s Biggest Board Meeting – is focused on reimagining South Africa’s future, by understanding what we can learn from the past months in terms of: building a leading digital economy to support SA’s economic revival; the necessity for investment in affordable, high quality technology and skills development; and a healthcare system that has been stretched beyond capacity.

This live streamed web-conference provides an opportunity for leaders in the private and public sectors to come together to debate, brainstorm and recommend solutions to steer the country in a post-Covid-19 world.


Andile Kumalo


S’thembiso Msomi

Editor, Sunday Times

Jonas Bogoshi


This year’s keynote address will be delivered by Herman Warren of The Economist. As The Economist Corporate Network’s Network Director for Africa, Warren is ideally informed and positioned to provide a global, integrated picture on the intersection between politics and the economy, particularly in relation to international responses to Covid-19 and the social, political and economic fallouts. With a view on the impact of the pandemic on middle income countries – of which South Africa is one – there are lessons to be learned from similarly positioned countries where some may have failed in their Covid-responses, and where others have proved most effective.

Herman Warren

Director: Africa – Corporate Network, The Economist

The annual Chairman’s Report, will reflect on what has transpired over the past year with a focus on what is needed to strengthen the country’s democracy, build public confidence, drive accountability and governance, and take the South African economy forward.

Tsakani Maluleke

Auditor-General South Africa

The national lockdown has had a detrimental effect on South Africa’s GDP, with the only hope for recovery coming in the third quarter of 2020 when the lockdown restrictions eased, and business was able to resume again. And then we entered yet another lockdown phase. It is clear that we find ourselves in uncharted waters, but we are not alone. Across the world, countries are scrambling to keep their economies intact while attempting to keep the virus at bay. Some have been more successful than others. What can we learn from countries with similar socio-economic challenges, like India and the “Kerala model” that flattened the curve in one of its most economically active regions? Or the steadfast approach of Vietnam in containing the outbreak through drastic and early action? How do we keep our on-going response agile and resilient to protect the economy?

Wandile Sihlobo

Chief Economist, Agricultural Business Chamber of South Africa

Tshifhiwa Tshivhengwa

Chief Executive Officer, Tourism Business Council South Africa

Zwelakhe Gila

Energy Specialist and Co-Founder,

Chommie Co.

Professor Mills Soko

Professor in International Business & Strategy, Wits Business School

Bruce Whitfield


The Covid-19 pandemic has dramatically accelerated the pace of digital transformation in the country. Brick and mortar businesses have transitioned online, and the use of digital video platforms like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Google Meets has skyrocketed as people started working remotely from home. With this dramatic shift into the online space, the disparity between the haves, and the have-nots has widened. The StatsSA data from 2020 tells us that more than a third of those between the age of 15 – 24 years are not in education, training, or employment of any sort. More than 20 million South Africans under the age of 35 are unemployed. But does this new transition to a tech-driven future provide an opportunity? What can we do to plug the tech skills shortage in South Africa? How can we use the opportunity that tech provides, to deliver a workforce that is primed for 4IR?

Seliki Tlhabane

Chief Director MST & Curriculum Enhancement, Dept of Basic Education

Hope Lukoto

Chief Human Resource Officer, BCX

Riaz Moola

CEO, HyperionDev

Vikela Rankin

Founder, Value Ed and Elevate

Professor Jonathan Jansen

Distinguished Professor of Education, Stellenbosch University

Ann Bernstein

CEO, Centre for Development and Enterprise South Africa

Nozipho Tshabalala


The fact that our hospitals have insufficient capacity is nothing new. Neither is the skills exodus in the healthcare sector. Yet, the response from our healthcare workers both in the private and public sector – amidst a crumbling infrastructure and lack of resources – has been one that is nothing short of phenomenal. What lessons can we take from the response of the Health sector? Can private and public partnership work, and how does it portend for a possible NHI scheme? How do we improve the health of our nation, and manage our resources better?

Dr Memela Makiwane

Chairperson, Council for Medical Schemes

Dr Angelique Coetzee

Chairperson, The South African Medical Association

Andile Khumalo


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