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Richard Maponya: Gone But Not Forgotten

Richard Maponya: Gone But Not Forgotten

“When an old man dies, a library burns to the ground.”

South African business mogul and a real estate developer, Dr. Richard Maponya has passed aways today January 06, 2020.

During the apartheid system in south Africa between 1948 and 1990s, Maponya, was still able to create a business territory and had the willpower to improve the south-western townships (Soweto) economically.

The 93 years old business tycoon who is officially known as Richard John Pelwana Maponya was born on December 24, 1920 in Tzaneen, present day Transvaal in South Africa.

At age 24, Maponya who had a diploma in education was teaching, as well as, taking inventories at a clothing manufacturing company.

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In the course of the stock taking, he earned a promotion for his white boss and himself which made his boss appreciated him by selling him stained clothing and offcuts and Maponya resold them in Soweto.

However, Maponya who planned on using the money gained for the things he resold to set up a clothing shop was rejected by the then government and was never granted a license.

The intervention of Oliver Thambo and Mandela’s law firm couldn’t settle the issue regarding the clothing shop license.

Later around the 1950s, he and his wife who was a cousin of the late Nelson Madiba Mandela started a Dube Hygienic Diary business and employed boys to deliver orders to customers who had small or no refrigeration access.

His business grew with different shops including general stores, filling stations and car dealerships in the 1970s.

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In the 1960s and 1970s, he became the first president of a political party named National African Federated Chamber of Commerce (NAFCOC) he created.

In addition, he was also the founder and chairman of African chamber of commerce (ANC), which he chose green, gold and black as the party colours after being granted the permission to select his horse racing colours.

The Father of black retail as recognized by the South Africans, died after a short illness at the age of 93 this morning.

He owned the biggest shopping mall called the Maponya Mall which was established in 2007…

He also won the honour of the South African National Order, the Grand Counselor of The Baobab (GCOB) in 2007…


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Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and love ones


Source: African News| African Education|South Africa News Photo:Phumti

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