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August 2011

Kim Cloete

CAPE TOWN – Gareth Ackerman comes across as something of a lone ranger in the business world.

Well, at least as far as putting his views on the line about controversial legislation and problems within government.

He raised concerns about the Protection of Information Bill a few months ago when he said it had the potential to scare off foreign investors and blunt the rights of consumers.

Now he’s come out strongly again about the legislation – as well as a range of other issues which he has warned could potentially scupper investment in South Africa, amongst them labour inflexibility, corruption and fading democratic principles.

In a speech to the Cape Town Press Club, he called on other business leaders to take more of a stand on key policy debates and issues they feel strongly about.

I’m very concerned that business people who are very dependent on government contracts, are scared of retribution from government. Government is a very large spender with very large tenders. You don’t want to fall foul of government. That’s why business falls quiet.” Read more.