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"We have made dismal progress," Edwin Mashego, of the National African Federated Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Nafcoc), said in Johannesburg at a briefing on the charter.
The charter was introduced by Nedlac, the National Economic Development and Labour Council, in 2002 and brought into effect in 2004 to correct, among other things, imbalances in the ownership of enterprises in the financial sector.
"Almost seven years later very little noticeable progress has been made," said Mashego.
The charter was revised in 2008. In November last year, Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies gazetted the first phase of the charter in terms of the Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment Act and invited comment.
The Confederation of Black Business Organisations' vice president, Tsakani Matshazi, said: "We have in place a framework . that tends to be a delaying tactic. This wait-and-see attitude . has a tendency to protect the interests of the incumbent."
Nafcoc's Mashego said leaders had failed black business by "trusting the benevolence" of financial institutions to deliver on true transformation.
"Incumbent owners will not relinquish control just because it is good to do so . but they are doing it because it's to their advantage.
"Institutions that have done things a certain way need to change . up to now they have been dictating things for themselves . we need to take control." For this reason, Nafcoc planned to establish its own black-empowered bank.
"Nafcoc has taken a resolution that the dreams of its founding fathers to establish its own black-empowered bank are going to be resuscitated, because we know that we cannot rely on the current incumbents to do that," Mashego said.