Nelson Letshwene

Author and Speaker



“Climate change is threatening the survival of crops such as the potato … and there is an urgent need to collect and store seeds … for future food security.”

Decision News Media, (May 23, 2007)


One of the most essential personal financial skills one should learn is the skill of protection.

Betsy Broke: How do I know I am financially protected?

Silver: Of course the first thing to be able to answer that question is to identify the risks.

Robby Rich: I think the first risk is the risk of self-sabotage!

Silver: Right! Self-sabotage is when you get yourself in financial situations whose consequences you have not really given much thought to.

Betsy Broke: Like what?

Silver: If your so called budget is already tight, meaning you are currently spending all that you are making, is it wise to go and take a loan?

Betsy Broke: Of course. The reason I take a loan is precisely because I have no additional money.

Silver: That would only work if you use your loan money to make more money … immediately. Otherwise it is self-sabotage because if you have no left over money, how are you going to service your loan?

Betsy Broke: Oh I see. Every month I am going to be required to make a regular payment on the loan I am taking, which means that I must have in my current budget an amount that is available to service that loan.

Silver: Unless you are able to start making extra money outside your current budget so that you can repay the loan. It is as basic as that.

Betsy Broke: How do I protect myself against emergencies?

Silver: Just about all emergencies can be covered through the use of insurance products and a small build up of an emergency fund.

Betsy Broke: Yes I can insure my car and my household contents, but what about when there’s death in the family?

Silver: Your financial contribution to death in the family could be money that comes from insurance companies because you included those people that depend on you in a funeral cover, or you encouraged them to take their own funeral covers.

Robby Rich: I think that’s a good idea. If you don’t want to carry a burden when people die, it is almost better to encourage all your relatives, especially those that are employed to take funeral covers for themselves; and we can help each other to cover those that are not yet employed or are elderly.

Betsy Broke: What about medical emergencies or car problems?

Silver: Of course medical aid is meant to cover that area, but for ailments not covered or adequately covered by medical aid, then you should have a medical emergency fund set aside.

Robbie Rich: It seems I should also set aside some funds aside for the excess I have to pay on my car should I have an accident, as well as other household emergencies that cannot be covered by insurance.

Silver: Financial Protection is a very important skill to master. Without it you are perpetually exposed to risk and therefore you can’t be very secure in planning for your future while you have one eye watching your back. It is better to have all your shields in place, and then soldier on in pursuing your financial objectives. 

Namasté. Your comments and suggestions are always welcome at