Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Years
2017 2018 2019 2020
Previous Archive
07 May 2019 | Story Valentino Ndaba | Photo Charl Devenish
Noko Masalesa
Noko Masalesa, Director of Protection Services, in conversation with students and stakeholders to plan a safe way forward.

Safety and security are human rights that constitute social justice. At the centre of the agenda at the University of the Free State’s (UFS) Social Justice Week held on the Bloemfontein Campus from 17-22 April 2019 were discussions about off-campus safety. Stakeholders agreed on an upgrade to security measures in order to ensure the success and wellbeing of the student population.

A call to students

Prof John Mubangizi, Dean of the Faculty of Law, in his capacity as representative of the UFS Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Francis Petersen, expressed his view on institutions of higher learning no longer functioning as ivory towers. “For any initiative to succeed, collaboration is necessary between key roleplayers,” he said.

He aptly pointed out that: “We cannot underscore the importance of safety and security, not only for the university but also for the communities around us. What the university does benefits the community and vice versa. I pledge the university’s commitment to play a leading part to ensure that the collaboration works,” said Prof Mubangizi.

Beefing up security: Who is involved?

In view of the collaborative effort Prof Mubangizi alluded to, the engagement was twofold. First was the roundtable discussion facilitated by Protection Services which then escalated into a public dialogue where students had the opportunity to interact with external delegates.

The South African Police Services, Community Police Forum, Private Security, Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality, Provincial Commissioner, and Deputy Minister of Police were well represented in this critical conversation. Internally, members of Protection Services, Housing and Residence Affairs, Student Affairs, Institute for Social Justice and Reconciliation, Student Representative Council, and the Department of Criminology heard the plight of off-campus safety faced by students.

Changes in the horizon

The discussions culminated with recommendations which will see the future of student safety take a different direction. According to Skhululekile Luwaca, former SRC president, these include “the municipality’s commitment to immediately address issues such as street lights and enforcing by-laws, ensuring an integrated accreditation system, and drafting a policy for off-campus accommodation, running more crime awareness campaigns, and giving police patrols more visibility.”

In addition to resolving to set up a student safety forum with all the stakeholders, the Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality has invited the UFS to join Reclaim the City – a safety forum where practical solutions to crime are devised and implemented on a weekly basis.


News Archive

Is milk really so well-known, asks UFS’s Prof. Osthoff
2011-03-17

Prof. Garry Osthoff
Photo: Stephen Collett

Prof. Garry Osthoff opened a whole new world of milk to the audience in his inaugural lecture, Milk: the well-known (?) food, in our Department of Microbial, Biochemical and Food Biotechnology of the Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Sciences.

Prof. Osthoff has done his research in protein chemistry, immuno-chemistry and enzymology at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) in Pretoria and post-doctoral research at the Bowman-Grey School of Medicine, North Carolina, USA. That was instrumental in establishing food chemistry at the university.
 
He is involved in chemical aspects of food, with a focus on dairy science and technology. He is also involved in the research of cheese processing as well as milk evolution and concentrated on milk evolution in his lecture. Knowledge of milk from dairy animals alone does not provide all the explanations of milk as food.
 
Some aspects he highlighted in his lecture were that milk is the first food to be utilised by young mammals and that it is custom-designed for each species. “However, mankind is an opportunist and has found ways of easy access to food by the practice of agriculture, where plants as well as animals were employed or rather exploited,” he said.
 
The cow is the best-known milk producer, but environmental conditions forced man to select other animals. In spite of breeding selection, cattle seem not to have adapted to the most extreme conditions such as high altitudes with sub-freezing temperatures, deserts and marshes.
 
Prof. Osthoff said the consumption of the milk as an adult is not natural; neither is the consumption of milk across species. This practice of mankind may often have consequences, when signs of malnutrition or diseases are noticed. Two common problems are an allergy to milk and lactose intolerance.
 
Allergies are normally the result of an immune response of the consumer to the foreign proteins found in the milk. In some cases it might help to switch from one milk source to another, such as switching from cow’s milk to goat’s milk.
 
Prof. Osthoff said lactose intolerance – the inability of adult humans to digest lactose, the milk sugar – is natural, as adults lose that ability to digest lactose. The symptoms of the condition are stomach cramps and diarrhoea. This problem is mainly found in the warmer climates of the world. This could be an indication of early passive development of dairy technology. In these regions milk could not be stored in its fresh form, but in a fermented form, in which case the lactose was pre-digested by micro-organisms, and the human population never adapted to digesting lactose in adulthood.
 
According to Prof. Osthoff, it is basically the lactose in milk that has spurred dairy technology. Its fermentation has resulted in the development of yoghurts and all the cheeses that we know. In turn, the intolerance to lactose has spurred a further technological solution: lactose-free milk is currently produced by pre-digestion of lactose with enzymes.
 
It was realised that the milks and products from different species differed in quality aspects such as keeping properties and taste. It was also realised that the nutritional properties differed as well as their effects on health. One example is the mentioned allergy against cow’s milk proteins, which may be solved by the consumption of goat’s milk. The nutritional benefits and technological processing of milk aroused an interest in more information, and it was realised that the information gained from human milk and that of the few domesticated species do not provide a complete explanation of the properties of milk as food. Of the 250 species of milk which have been studied, only the milk of humans and a few domesticated dairy animals has been studied in detail.

Media Release
15 March 2011
Issued by: Lacea Loader
Director: Strategic Communication
Tel: 051 401 2584
Cell: 083 645 2454
E-mail: news@ufs.ac.za

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept