As a means to empower women-owned businesses and help provide business opportunities, with much-needed support in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector, Broadband Infraco (BBI), in collaboration with Sentech, has resuscitate the Basadi in Telecoms Programme.

The programme previously launched in 2015 by the late former Chief Executive Officer, Puleng Kwele with the objective to ensure that women play a pivotal role in the telecommunications and constructions sectors, as well as being offered support in their areas of challenges was held at the Inanda Club in Sandton this week and it boasted participation from industry leaders in the ICT sector, which included, amongst others, Sentech.


Phumza Dyani, the Chief Marketing Officer of BBI opened the event, echoing the importance of being intentional with Transformation Programmes as well as intensifying collaborations as a part of the strategy to accelerate bridging the inequality gap. The BBI Board Chairperson, Leah Khumalo, a keynote speaker at the event, emphasised the commitment of the Board to playing a significant support role in fortifying the transformation of strategic pillars like representation in recruitment, supply chain and ensuring that these are implemented with impact.

BBI’s CEO, Andrew Matseke, emphasised the message of the importance of men being pillars to transformation and supporting women to succeed. While, BBI Chairperson, Leah Khumalo shared the details of the Transformation programmes at BBI, together with upcoming opportunities for women and possible areas of collaboration.

She said: “The initiative will facilitate for a comprehensive enterprise development and support programme aimed at facilitating a technical skills development of female service providers and professionals.”

In fact, Naidoo said that one of the pillars of BBI’s Basadi in Telecoms initiative is to increase the Company’s spend on local products manufactured by women owned companies, increase competition within the sector and ensure that the sector is served by a broader representative market.

“Basadi in Telecoms will be a quarterly event and will boast significant brands in the industry, also including OEMs, with the intent to create an industry wide initiative, where an organisation can influence other organisations through its procurement and purchasing decisions. This is a recommendation of ISO26000 5.4, which recommends this through leadership and mentorship along the value chain,” said Khumalo.

Representing Sentech, Milisa Kentane also welcomed the opportunity to partner with BBI, a sister company to Sentech, as symbolic of what collaboration can achieve in making significant and impactful strides to addressing a global matter like transformation.

The sequence was followed by Sonwabise Sebata (Chairperson: South African Women In ICT), Avhaathu Rathogwa (Chief Revenue Officer for Sizwe IT Group), Given Wageng (Sentech Supply Chain) and Maleshini Naidoo (BBI’s Acting: Supply Chain GM). The speakers welcomed the initiative for collaboration for more impact, supporting the realisation that individualistic approaches to bridging the gap slow down the progress and the impact that can be made.

Present at the relaunch were SMMEs from Gauteng, Limpopo, KZN and Mpumalanga. This speaks to the intention of this Programme to not only reach the Gauteng province, but also the rural SMMEs of South Africa.

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