Unhu/Ubuntu the Missing Link in Urban Informal Manufacturers and Traders in Zimbabwe: Seeking to Close the Gap


  • Ngoni Makuvaza
  • Gracious Zinyeka


business, informal sector, unhu/ubuntu, ethics, critical thinking


Integrating Unhu/Ubuntu/ethics and critical thinking into the informal business sector is one way of maximising the relevance of services and goods for enhanced customers’ satisfaction and sustainability of the informal industry segment. The lack of Unhu/ubuntu and critical thinking, however, among the urban manufacturers and traders constitute a major challenge for sustainability. This article argues for the necessity to apply Unhu/ubuntu and critical thinking philosophies as an innovation to support informal urban manufacturers and traders to enhance sustainability in business. First, an attempt was made to present real-life experiences of some customers who had been conned by urban manufacturers and traders at Mbare Musika in Harare, Zimbabwe. Second, the integration of Unhu/ubuntu and critical thinking into the informal business sector are argued as ways in which sustainability in the sector could be enhanced. The main deductions of the study are that workshops should be held for the informal sector to empower them with skills of professional business ethics and that leadership should provide legal frameworks and education for the informal sector. Further, leadership should be exemplary and understanding the after-effects of leadership’s failure to be responsible and ethical.