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Elephant in the Room


How dark does it need to get before the dawn…?

In June 2022, some of South Africa’s greatest minds joined host Michael Summerton to discuss the more pertinent political and economic situations of our country in our much anticipated, annual Elephant in the Room debate.

Returning to the block was STANLIB’s chief economist, Kevin Lings, and political analyst, Max du Preez, and they were joined by esteemed guest, Dr. Kgosientsho Ramokgopa, Head of Investment and Infrastructure in the Presidency.

Missed out? Watch below:

The speakers


Kevin Lings

Chief Economist

Kevin Lings is the chief economist at STANLIB and as a core member of the STANLIB investment team, Kevin’s economic research and assessments directly feed into and inform the company’s asset allocation strategy. 

Kevin’s career as an economist began with the Nedcor Group where he remained for ten years. He then spent two years at JP Morgan as an economist. Kevin holds a B.Com Hons in Economics from the University of the Witwatersrand.

Max du Preez

Political Analyst

Cape Town based Max du Preez is a veteran South African journalist, author, and public speaker. He is a highly regarded political analyst because of his deep insights into the political dynamics of the last three decades, his access to the main political actors and his honest, forthright approach.

After graduating in Political Science at the University of Stellenbosch in 1973, he worked as a newspaper journalist covering South African politics and the conflicts in its neighbouring states.

Dr Ramokgopa INN8 (2)

Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa

Head of Investment and Infrastructure
The Presidency

Dr Kgosientso Ramokgopa is the Head of the newly created Investment and Infrastructure unit in the Office of the Presidency. Ramokgopa, who hails from Atteridgeville in Pretoria, holds a number of academic qualifications which include a BSc Civil Engineering (University of Durban-Westville), Master of Public Administration (University of Pretoria), Master of Business Leadership (UNISA), a Certificate in Executive Development (Stellenbosch) and a PhD in Public Affairs from the University of Pretoria.

Dr Ramokgopa has a rich history with the ANC. He led the South African Student Congress (SASCO), the ANC Youth League at the University of Durban Westville and the ANC branch in Atteridgeville, and served as ANC Ward 51 Councillor (2000 to 2005). He is currently Chairperson of the ANC in the Tshwane Region.  Ramokgopa Served as CEO of the Metropolitan Trading Company, an entity of the City of Johannesburg; CEO of the Johannesburg Market; Deputy Chairperson of the Board of Trade and Investment, Limpopo. Throughout this career he has received several awards and recognition for his achievements. He was awarded the 2008 MTN Boss of the Year, 2009 CEO of the Year (adjudicated by the Institute of People Management) and was the recipient of the 2010 Black Business Quarterly Young Business Achiever of the Year Award. His life motto is: “Live truthfully and you shall prevail against all adversity.”

Myth 2: How Will Tax Affect My Offshore Investment?

Michael Summerton

Head of Proposition
INN8 Investment Platform

Michael started his career as an Audit Senior Manager at Ernst & Young, before joining Allan Gray in various retail EXCO roles, including Head of Retail Finance, Head of Client Experience and Product Development Senior Manager. In 2017, Michael moved to Liberty to head up Proposition for the Group Investment Platform & Marketing of INN8, the independent investment platform brand of the group and was core to the team that launched the platform. Choosing a life in financial services over one in auditing, he feels most rewarded when connecting grannies with solutions that make their hard-earned retirement a little more dignified.

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