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In South Africa, Pick n Pay CEO Richard Brasher said yesterday that the company will donate all the profits from all its stores on Sunday to charitable causes in honor of former President Nelson Mandela, who passed away a week ago.

Sunday is the day of Mandela's official funeral. Brasher said he'd considered closing the stores for the day, but consultation with staff and customers persuaded him that donating profits was a more appropriate tribute.

Brasher also said that any employee who wished not to work on Sunday would be permitted to take the day off, and that stores will only be staffed by people who wanted to work.

"All of South Africa is united in wanting to honour Nelson Mandela’s extraordinary life and legacy, not just in this the week following his passing, but in the time to come," Brasher said in a prepared statement, adding, "Our staff are tremendously excited about this initiative. With their help and with the support of our customers, Pick n Pay’s 'Day for Madiba' will be a fitting way to contribute to the enduring legacy of a truly great man."
KC's View:
This is a particularly appropriate tribute coming from Pick n Pay, which has a long history in South Africa of fighting against apartheid when it was politically incorrect to do so. I remember visiting South Africa more than 20 years ago, and spending time with Raymond Ackerman, the company's founder … an extraordinary man who was using the might of his company to fight against the injustice of that racist policy. I've always said that Ackerman was as close to a saint as anyone I've ever met in business … and it is good to see the company continuing that tradition.