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Gaby Magomola: Robben Island to Wall Street

Tuesday, June 29th 2010 at 5:30 PM


29 June 2010 @ 5.30 for 6pm

Gaby Magomola: Robben Island to Wall Street
What the island taught me is that with the right attitude anything and everything is possible.”         Gaby Magomola
Dr Gaby Magomola’s book reflects on a critical time in the history of South Africa. Taking broad lyrical strides across various major crucial epochs in the history of this country, Gaby offers an insider’s view of a number of key events. During the 1960s, the country was in the grip of various uprisings leading to the Sharpeville massacre, and the arrest and incarceration of various leaders and activists of the day, including the young Gaby.  Some years later, the Soweto uprisings followed; while during the 80s and early 90s the repressive reign of PW Botha prevailed  –  which later ended with the subsequent demise of Apartheid.
A wide range of events are aptly captured in this brave book – vivid descriptions of his life as a young man, his involvement in the struggle and his adult life as a businessman in the new South Africa. Readers will enjoy sharing his journey to various places which had shaped his life, from the Bekkersdal township, to Robben Island, then moving on to Mabopane township, swiftly over to the United States and then, thankfully for his compatriots in South Africa, back to Johannesburg.
This true account is a significant contribution to documenting life in Apartheid South Africa. In looking wider than the inside of Robben Island, as one of South Africa’s most symbolic centers of incarceration during the dark days of Apartheid, Gaby Magomola elevates this personal story to a life-affirming tale of courage and hope for all generations.
In overcoming historical injustices and having dealt with a painful personal history in a courageous manner, Gaby tells a gripping story which will serve to encourage a new generation of business leaders. He generously shares his life strategies which led to his survival within and triumph over a business world that was hostile to black people.  He endured a harsh prison life at the tender age of nineteen; he navigated the steep climb from a casual labourer to a global career in banking. On his return to South Africa, he made a pioneering effort to set up new business ventures.  Such highlights form the lifeblood of a bold and enduring narrative.
Gaby Magomola is a man with an indomitable spirit, who made his presence felt on Robben Island, much in the same manner as he did later in the business arena locally and abroad. With his determined effort at raising the morale during his incarceration, Gaby and his trumpet was virtually the Island’s Pied Piper, and small wonder then that he was the first person allowed to keep a musical instrument.
In the same manner as his music stirred hearts, this book will serve to inspire generations to come.