16 March 2023 | Story Dr Nitha Ramnath
UFS Thought Leader webinar

The University of the Free State is pleased to present its first webinar titled, The threats to South Africa’s domestic stability and security challenges, which is part of the 2023 Thought-Leader Webinar Series. As a public higher-education institution in South Africa with a responsibility to contribute to public discourse, the University of the Free State (UFS) will be presenting the webinar in collaboration with the Free State Literature Festival. The aim of the webinar series is to discuss issues facing South Africa by engaging experts at the university and in South Africa. 

First webinar presented on 4 April 2023

South Africa is facing a security risk and the state is not complying with its social contract. High crime rates driven by unemployment and poverty, collapsing infrastructure, political insecurity and tension, and an appetite for lawlessness, pose real threats to domestic stability. South Africans are cynical about state intelligence agencies, and the ability of government to lead an effective response to potential crises is questioned. What are the solutions to the threatening domestic instability and security challenges facing South Africa?

Date: Tuesday 4 April 2023
Time: 12:30-14:00
RSVP: Click here  (no later than 3 April 2023).

For further information, contact Alicia Pienaar at pienaaran1@ufs.ac.za

Some of the topics discussed by leading experts in 2022 included, among others, Crime in South Africa – who is to blame; Are our glasses half full or half empty; What needs to be done to power up South Africa; A look into the future of South Africa. 


Prof Francis Petersen
Rector and Vice-Chancellor, UFS

Chief Executive Officer
Business Leadership South Africa

Director: Strategy and Marketing
Clarity Global Strategic Communications

Senior Professor: Centre for Gender and Africa Studies
University of the Free State

Co-Founder and Director
New South Institute

Bios of speakers:

Busisiwe Mavuso

Busisiwe Mavuso is a Chartered Certified Accountant (CCA) who qualified with the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (ACCA – UK) and holds a master’s degree in Business Leadership, a postgraduate qualification in Management from GIBS, and a BCompt in Accounting from the University of South Africa (UNISA).  Mavuso is currently completing her PhD.

She is the Chief Executive Officer at Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA), Business Unity South Africa (BUSA), and Resultant Finance (a PIC investee company) and serves on the Human Resource Development Council (HRDC), the Advisory Committee of the Local Government Ethical Leadership Initiative (LGELI), The Alcohol Industry Advisory Council (TAIAC), the Drinks Federation of South Africa (DF-SA) Council of Members, and the Social Justice Council. Furthermore, Mavuso is a Visiting Adjunct Professor at the Wits Business School (WBS).

Mavuso is a member of the YPO (Young President’s Organisation), the IoDSA, and ACCA.

She was awarded the ‘2020 Influencer of Influencers Award’ by the Africa Brand Summit in October 2020, and was named second runner-up for ‘Businessperson of the Year’ by the Daily Maverick in 2021. In 2022, the Women in Economic Development Leadership Forum awarded her a Certificate of Acknowledgement to acknowledge the years of dedication to the field of business leadership and economic development in South Africa.

Palesa Morudu-Rosenberg 

Palesa Morudu-Rosenberg is a Director at Clarity Global, a strategic communications firm based in Cape Town and Washington DC. She is also a writer and a political commentator. She is currently writing a book on the limits of identity politics for South Africa and the United States.

Dr Ivor Chipkin

Ivor Chipkin is the Director of the New South Institute, based in Johannesburg. Before that, he was the founder and director of the Public Affairs Research Institute at the University of the Witwatersrand and the University of Cape Town for ten years. In 2017, Chipkin – with several colleagues – wrote and released the Betrayal of the Promise report, a study of state capture that had a huge political impact in South Africa. Chipkin completed his PhD at the École Normale Supérieure in France, where he also did his DEA. Chipkin was an Oppenheimer Fellow at the University of Oxford. He is the author of Do South Africans Exist? (WUP: 2007) and Shadow State: the politics of state capture with Mark Swilling (WUP: 2018). His new book, The Shattered Vessel, is due to be published in 2023.

Prof Hussein Solomon

Prof Hussein Solomon holds a DLitt et Phil (Political Science) from the University of South Africa. He is currently Senior Professor in the Centre for Gender and Africa Studies at the University of the Free State. His research interests include conflict and conflict resolution in Africa; South African foreign policy; international relations theory; religious fundamentalism and population movements within the developing world. His publications have appeared in South Africa, Nigeria, the United States, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, the Russian Federation, Greece, the Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Egypt, Ethiopia, Israel, Lebanon, India, Bangladesh, Spain, and Japan. Hussein is widely published and some of his recent books among others include, African Security in the Anthropocene (with Jude Cocodia, Springer, 2023), Directions in International Terrorism: Theories, Trends and Trajectories (Palgrave, 2021), Terrorism in Africa: New Trends and Frontiers (with Glen Segell and Sergey Kostelyanets, Institute for African Studies, Moscow, 2021). 

Until 2022, he was Academic Head of Department in the Department of Political Studies and Governance at the University of the Free State. Hussein has vast experience -his previous appointments include Executive Director of the International Institute of Islamic Studies; Professor and Director of the Centre for International Political Studies at the University of Pretoria, Research Manager at the African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes, Senior Researcher: Institute for Security Studies, and Research Fellow: Centre for Southern African Studies at the University of the Western Cape, among others. 


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