Ex-politician Lincoln Mali launches book on African leadership

Author Lincoln Mali signed a copy of his book for his cousin, Joy Summerton
POPULAR MAN: Author Lincoln Mali signed a copy of his book for his cousin, Joy Summerton

The family, friends and former teachers of Gqeberha-born author Lincoln Mali sang his praises during the launch of his book Blazing a Trail: Lessons for African Leadership at the Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium on Tuesday evening.

The event was attended by local business people, politicians and young people and was hosted by broadcast veteran Vuyo Mvoko.

Mali used the launch as an opportunity to dissect the book and touch on the inspiration behind some of the topics covered in it. 

Speaking at the launch, Mali’s former maths teacher and principal at Newell High School, New Brighton, Thandeka Mbopha, said she was proud of everything he had achieved. 

“I was his maths teacher and I was very strict, but they knew behind that there was a loving mother,” she said.

Mbopha said Mali had been a good child who was sometimes mischievous, like most children. 

“He was at Newell for only one year, in matric, but the relationship we built makes me thank God that he came to our school. I am so proud of him.

“It feels like it’s my own child who has achieved all of this,” she said.

Politician Luvuyo Mini described him as a son of the soil whom he had served with in the mass democratic movement.

“Everything good said here today about Lincoln is a true reflection of who he is. It’s rare to find people like him.”

Mini said he would love a scenario where Mali went back to politics to practise his leadership style, which he said was desperately needed.

“We served in different structures of the movement.

“He was involved in politics while we fought for nonracial sports.

“When you talk about the renewal of the ANC you talk about people like him — ethical, principled and disciplined leaders.”

In the book, Mali speaks about the need to adopt a people-centred, ethical and compassionate style of leadership as opposed to the dominant, command-and-control style at present implemented by leaders.

One of the chapters in the book, “Politics divorced me”, sparked a conversation about Mali’s involvement in politics during his youth and why he left for the corporate sector, where he had a successful journey.

Mali said people often asked him to get involved in government, which essentially meant he had to go through the political party system to make it through the ranks, and this was not something he was willing to do.

“In the chapter I talk about why I don’t want to associate myself further with politics.

“People often tell me to get involved but most know that our system is a party political system,” he said.

“Unless you emerge through the party, you will not go anywhere, and it’s only recently that the Constitutional Court allowed individuals to contest elections.

“My value system does not allow me to agree with something that is wrong,” Mali said. 




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