“In Worcester you have a first world economy and then you have a third world economy, which shouldn’t be the case.”
So says Siphiwo Mavumengwana, an entrepreneur, development consultant and founder/CEO of Con Bin South Africa, during an interview with the Standard.
His comparison of the two extremities (first and third world economies) which drives the town’s local economy is based on his opinion of Worcester’s separate development nature, which is still a major issue.
He states: “The third world economy includes your Zweletemba, Roodewal, Riverview, Avian Park and Durban Street businesses, whereas the first world economy ranges from the central business district all the way to the mall.
“We need to form an integrated economy where there is no separate development, but where we focus on the sector as a collective, which will be beneficial for all people in the town.”
Mavumengwana also serves on the management committee of the Worcester Business Forum (WBF) and holds responsibility for the external relations portfolio.
His objective is to maintain and grow relations of the forum with its external stakeholders, and to establish and maintain relations with investors - all to the benefit of the local business community.
Mavumengwana is a business savvy professional who comes from humble beginnings, but has never lost sight of becoming a business guru or magnate.
He was born in Worcester and during his teenage years, attended Obadyah College in Plumstead, where he later matriculated (1989). Thereafter he went to further his studies and now holds a marketing qualification.For him, there is nothing better than a daunting challenge, as he always tends to get a thrill from it and is usually very successful. He told the Standard that there are still several challenges in Worcester that residents face, such as gangsterism, prostitution, rape and the extensive abuse of drugs amongst the youth.
“We need to start debating, discussing and planning how we are going to address our challenges in this town. A good start, I thought, was the implementation of the police trailer in the central business district. Creating opportunities, but also educating people are two critical factors when considering solutions to our problems,” said Mavumengwana.
At the moment, he and two more WBF colleagues, Herman Bester and Sheraz Rayban, are working on the Zweletemba Economic Development Corridor.
According to Mavumengwana, the corridor entails the main road in Zweletemba being turned into a business hub. This means that they will approach businesses to establish themselves in the township, and have already secured services from government and funding for the development of the corridor.
Apart from the business side of Mavumengwana’s life, he loves the outdoors and enjoys camping with friends and family. Travelling, sharing ideas, mentoring people and ploughing back into his community are a few other hobbies which he is passionate about.
His vision for Worcester? “A beautiful unified valley where there is no separate development and where economic opportunities are available for all and not only a select few. A drug free valley and a place where the raping of children and women are non-existent.”
NO TO 1ST AND 3RD ECONOMYMATTHEW SHELDON Worcester Standard