There are two ways of looking at life – from the pessimist’s point of view or from the optimist’s point of view.
Is the glass half empty or is it half full?
Over the past 171 days, in this time of lockdown, I have had time to ponder about this beautiful, magnificent world in which we live, and the planet we seem to want to destroy.
Is this who we are, or what we have become?
Is this a lesson to mankind, and if so, what lessons have we learnt?
One of the most amazing lessons I have learnt on this journey is the incredible spirit and resilience we have, and the coming together for the common good of so many people, organisations, stakeholders and business leaders.
A perfect example is what has transpired over the past twelve weeks or so with the Port of Cape Town.
After being the pariah at the outset of the virus, due to the havoc at the port due to absenteeism of essential workers, this is now strictly under control.
Achieving this was no mean feat - and it was thanks to all the stakeholders getting together virtually every Tuesday and Thursday that we realised we all had the same goal
Through this twice-weekly engagement and being open, honest and transparent, we have overcome our obstacles and resolved issues together as a team, for the common good.
The success of a functioning port is our success as well, it can be done – we have proved it!
Not only are the terminals part of the good story, but so is the Sturrock Dry Dock, the largest in the Southern Hemisphere, which has been awarded the contract for the repairs to the De Beers vessel, Gariep, starting mid-August - and she will be laid up for an extensive stay.
This is a major coup for the ship repair industry, which has been floundering over the past few years
Not only will this create over 5 000 jobs on site for the duration of her stay, there are also the add-on benefits for the city.
It will place us back in the global sphere for future work as there are not many ports that can offer a facility of this size – not forgetting the smaller, well-utilised Robinson Dry Dock which forms part of the V & A Waterfron – and is an added tourist attraction in itself.
As I come to the end of my first edition of ‘The Cape Gallery’, let us not forget the women of our industry and honour them.
Within the confines of our port we are extremely fortunate to have as our port manager Mpumi Dweba-Ketana, under whose stewardship the Port of Cape Town is on its way to regaining its position not only as Tavern of the Seas, but as the go-to port of choice on the global stage, geographically, in terms of ease and cost of doing business, and its passionate and professional team.
I take my hat off to you!
Until next time.