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SA: Statement by the Motsepe Foundation, philantrophic foundation, African Rainbow Minerals founder and executive chairman Patrice Motsepe gives half of wealth to the poor (30/01/2013)

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SA: Statement by the Motsepe Foundation, philantrophic foundation, African Rainbow Minerals founder and executive chairman Patrice Motsepe gives half of wealth to the poor (30/01/2013)

30th January 2013

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The Founder and Executive Chairman of African Rainbow Minerals (ARM), Patrice Motsepe today announced that the Motsepe Family, “will contribute at least half of the funds generated by our family assets to the Motsepe Foundation” to be used during his lifetime and beyond and that of his wife, Precious Motsepe, to improve the lifestyles and living conditions of poor, disabled, unemployed, women, youth, workers and marginalised South Africans.

Patrice Motsepe said, “I decided quite some time ago to give at least half of the funds generated by our family assets to uplift poor and other disadvantaged and marginalised South Africans but was also duty-bound and committed to ensuring that it would be done in a way that protects the interests and retains the confidence of our shareholders and investors”.

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The Motsepe family has also been inspired by and decided to join the Giving Pledge which was initiated by Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates to encourage wealthy families worldwide to give at least half of their wealth to charity.

Patrice Motsepe said, “South Africans are caring, compassionate and loving people. It has always been part of our culture and tradition to assist and care for less fortunate and marginalised members of our communities. This culture is also embodied in the spirit and tradition of Ubuntu/Botho.

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I was exposed to the spirit of Ubuntu/Botho at a very young age. I remember as a seven year old working in my father’s grocery store, seeing poor members of our community receiving free groceries from my mother. My parents also regularly paid for the school and university fees of less fortunate children from our communities.

I was also a beneficiary of various people, black and white, in South Africa and in the US who educated, trained, mentored and inspired me and whose faith and belief in me contributed to my success in my profession, business and elsewhere. The same can be said about my wife, Precious and we are deeply indebted to them and many more.

My parents taught me about business and entrepreneurship and also about the duty of giving and caring for the poor and marginalised.

Precious and I recognise the huge responsibility and duty that the Motsepe family has to poor, unemployed, disabled, women, youth, workers and marginalised South Africans. We also have an ongoing obligation of nation building, uniting black and white South Africans and contributing towards making South Africa, Africa and the world a better place.

We have contributed over many years to education and health; the development and upliftment of women, youth, workers and the disabled; churches; the development of entrepreneurs and social entrepreneurs; rural and urban upliftment; soccer including youth soccer development; music and to other charities and foundations. In 1999 we established the Motsepe Foundation to undertake and oversee our various philanthropic initiatives.

The businesses that we started or participate in also became important instruments for job creation, education, healthcare, poverty alleviation and wealth creation.

Most of our donations have been private but the need and challenges are great and we hope that our Giving Pledge will encourage others in South Africa, Africa and other emerging economies to give and make the world a better place.

We will continue to work with and encourage Governments on the African continent to implement fiscal, legislative, anti-corruption and other measures to ensure that their economies are globally competitive and attractive to private sector and other business investments. Economies that are growing and have ethical and accountable political, business and other leaders are better positioned and substantially more effective in dealing with poverty, joblessness, illiteracy and disease.

The Motsepe Foundation will continue to focus on initiatives and projects which will assist the beneficiaries to become self-sustaining and independent.

We are going to establish an Advisory Council for the Motsepe Foundation which will consist of church and religious leaders, traditional, disabled, women, youth and labour leaders and other respected NGO and community upliftment leaders.

I would like to express our deep gratitude to Warren Buffett, for the advice and wisdom he shared with me in Omaha during August 2012 and for inspiring thousands of people worldwide to give and care for the less fortunate.

We would also like to thank Bill and Melinda Gates for their encouragement and for providing us with additional information on the Giving Pledge at our meeting in Cape Town during December 2012. Their work in Africa and other continents and their commitment to humanity continues to inspire us and many people throughout the world.

Our culture, religious upbringing and values guided and influenced us in making this commitment and we are proud that our children support our pledge.

Their future and the future of all South Africans requires us to give hope and build a better and brighter future for all our people.”

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