Event Celebrates Women’s Month
UKZN’s Corporate Relations Division (CRD) organised a Women’s Month event to celebrate and honour women for their resilience.
Acting Dean and Head of the School of Arts, Professor Nobuhle Hlongwa, noted that, ‘Today we are celebrating women that are entrepreneurs and risk takers, who invent and manage, our sisters and our mothers.’
The founder and CEO of Motseng Investment Holdings (MIH), Mrs Ipeleng Nonkululeko Mkhari, was the keynote speaker. She holds a Bachelor of Social Science from UKZN and was the first Black woman to own a CCTV business. Mkhari subsequently founded MIH, a diversified investment holdings group in 1998. In November 2012, MIH listed Delta Property Fund, a leading Black-managed and Black-owned property loan stock company on the JSE with an asset value of around R7 billion.
Mkhari thanked the University for inviting her and said that she was honoured to return to her roots. Her address focused on “being enough” and women empowerment. She noted that adversity had always propelled her forward: ‘We don’t realise that there are moments where we need to fail in order to learn. I have failed more than I have won but I have won nonetheless.’
Mkhari urged more Black women to acquire property, as a means of creating wealth. She traced her journey in business as a self-made millionaire, transitioning from services to property. She reminded women that they are more than enough and encouraged them to instil habits of self-love, not just in themselves but also in their children, through affirmation. ‘The greatest disservice we do to ourselves is by not loving ourselves. You need to love yourself and have self-confidence, something that you can give your children through affirmation because everything that you think you are, is what you become,’ she said.
Mkhari reflected on the current issues confronting women in South Africa, including the lack of representation and violence against women and pointed to education as the solution. ‘We have to feed our boy and girl child constructs that will debunk generations of historic inequality. We must also employ women, trade with them and elevate them through education,’ she said.
The event closed with a question and answer session, where Mkhari responded to questions ranging from business, to relationships, investment and self-love. ‘Entrepreneurship is a mind-set, but you have to start with something and start small. As women we need to learn to say “no” more often, and make the time to do more of what we love because you can’t give what you don’t have,’ she said.
Guests enjoyed performances by Music student, Ms Nosihe Zulu and hip-hop duo Lio X Tiger.
Words: Hlengiwe Precious Khwela
Photograph: Albert Hirasen