Outdoor & Events

Right 2 Read

Right 2 Read

Issue 53 | December 2019


Havas Johannesburg

Creative Team

Chief Creative Officer: John Davenport Fiona O'Conoor, Luigi Moricco, Carl Wilsnach


May 2019


Education in the Limpopo Province of South Africa has long been synonymous with corruption. In 2012 the Education Department was taken to court for failing to deliver text books to the schools of the region.

Head of the Department of Education was Ishmael Kgetjepe, who managed to stay in office despite the accusations of bribery.


A campaign to have Mr. Kgetjepe removed from office was orchestrated by the charity Right2Read.

Noticing that people could be taken direct to a Facebook page by a simple QR code, Right2Read started a guerrilla marketing campaign using this facility.

Taking a quote from Mr. Kgetjepe describing education in Limpopo as great, children were invited to write to him, ironically congratulating him on his observation.

Their letters were spelled badly to make the point and they ran as posters and in print ads around the region. Every poster included a QR code that enabled viewers to go directly to Kgetjebe’s Facbook page and post a photo of it.

Soon his page was being bombarded with photos as citizens joined Right2Read in protest.

However speedily the photos were taken down, they were replaced.


In May 2019 it was announced that Ishmael Kgetjepe was being replaced.

Our Thoughts

Should brands get actively involved in politics? As we have noted on pages 60- 61, in respect of BT’s new campaign to give computer skills to 5 million children in the UK, sometimes brands need to step in where governments fail. In this instance, both local and central government were failing the people they had been elected to serve. Usually this sort of personal attack is how political parties take swipes at each other in the run-up to an election. So it was brave of Right2Read to take on a powerful politician in this way.

Ironically, where they used Facebook to bring down a politician, over in the USA, where there is a President accused of many of the same things, he is using Facebook ads to defend himself.

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