A conversation with Jay Naidoo
Jay Naidoo has been at the heart of one of the biggest social change attempts of our time: the transformation of South Africa. He worked closely with Nelson Mandela to overcome the apartheid regime and, as founding General Secretary of the Congress of South African Trade Unions, he was asked by Mandela to join the first post-apartheid cabinet of Mandela’s presidency. Later he became Chairman of the Development Bank of Southern Africa. In 2010, Naidoo sold off a third of his stake in his social development business and donated the proceeds to two unnamed charitable trusts to continue the work of social justice He has published his autobiography, ‘Fighting for Justice’ and more recently published his book ‘Change: Organising Tomorrow, Today.’.
His has been a personal journey from militant activist to politician to social entrepreneur and now something that goes beyond and holds it all. While Jay Naidoo still sees himself as an activist, at the same time he has found a new understanding of what it means to be a poltiical human being. The indigenous wisdom of his South African culture and many other traditional cultures has transformed his approach to activism. Spirituality, particularly indigenous spirituality, opens new questions and new approaches to creating deep change.
In this week’s Radio evolve, Thomas Steininger talks with Jay Naidoo about why political activism needs spirituality.