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Opinion / Columnist

Omalayitsha contribute to standards of living

07 Apr 2021 at 07:03hrs | Views
BUSINESSES worldwide are in two major categories of size befitting the significant roles they play in satisfying different needs in an economy.

There are those that are large and do well in satisfying corporate needs and there are small ones which meet individual and personal needs effectively.

All such businesses should be allowed to operate and complement each other to the satisfication not only of the needs of a nation but also to raise the standards of living of the people.

In this country, I have observed with interest how useful and effective omalayitsha operate in satisfying the economic needs of communities through delivery of the most needed imported items to households and small businesses.

They go deep into rural areas that many bus companies claim are inaccessible because of poor road infrastructure to cater for the maginalised members of society.

In urban areas, they move from surbub to surbub to deliver goods for small businesses and households.

Omalayitsha are creative and astute business entrepreneurs that have identified a business gap that was left by big transporters and can only be filled by them because the activities they do require that personal touch movement from house to house, conversing at personal level with their clients.

Omalayitsha are a unique indigenous business model that shows ingenuity and needs the support of government and the nation as a discovery that gives Africa a place in the discovery of business models.

Therefore, omalayitsha should be accorded all the support they need. They should never be stifled.

Omalayitsha are a force to reckon with which should not be underestimated in the business world and in terms of the assets they have acquired.

For one to get an idea of their achievements, one should visit their rural homesteads in Tsholotsho, Plumtree or Kezi.

They have established businesses such as general dealerships, hardware shops and grinding mills to uplift the lives of the communities they come from.

Some, for example, have even financially supported the establishment of clinics in their rural areas such as koMatshaya in Tsholotsho.

They have built rural homes that are the envy of many urban dwellers in the country.

It is not uncommon to find solar-powered amenities at their rural homes.

Solar-powered boreholes, tiled houses and irrigation schemes are a common feature in areas they come from. What more can a community ask of its offspring?

Many individuals in this country live good lives because they are sustained by the imported supplies delivered by omalayitsha.

The supplies range from basic necessities such as medicines, food supplies to luxuries such as modern electronic gadgets needed to make communication easy.

Also, many small businesses owe their continued existence to imported supplies they acquire through these creative indigenous entrepreneurs.

Omalayitsha need to be supported by all Zimbabweans because they contribute immensely to our wellbeing.

They represent a new African model of business.

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Reinford Khumalo is professor of business leadership and organisational behaviour. He is a consultant on strategy. He writes here in his personal capacity. He can be contacted on e-mail: reinford.khumalo@gmail.

Source - newsday
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