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24 May 2019 | Story Eloise Calitz | Photo Charl Devenish
Gangster book Discussion
From left: Jacques van Wyk from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE) Cathy Dlodlo, news editor from OFM; Pieter Roux from the UFS Business School; Alta Vermeulen from the UFS Department of Political Studies and Governance and Pieter-Louis Myburgh, author

A packed Odeion Auditorium at the University of the Free State was welcomed by Professor Helena van Zyl, Head of the UFS Business School. The reason being, a panel discussion with award-winning investigative reporter and author, Pieter-Louis Myburgh, on his much-publicised book Gangster State: Unravelling Ace Magashule's Web of Capture. The programme took the form of a panel discussion. The panellists included Pieter-Louis Myburgh, author; Jacques van Wyk from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE); Cathy Dlodlo, news editor from OFM; Alta Vermeulen from the UFS Department of Political Studies and Governance; and Pieter Roux from the UFS Business School.

In his introduction, Myburgh said he was happy that he was able to come to Bloemfontein and have the discussion, since South Africans should cherish freedom of speech and a free press.

The research for the book took 13 months to conclude, and during this time he spent a lot of time in the Free State and Bloemfontein. He mentioned that the book gave him the opportunity to present a condensed account of what he discovered; he could therefore share more, as opposed to just reporting on a story in the newspaper. For him, investigative reporting should always be fact based and open to scrutiny.

Some of the topics raised by the panel was concern about the perception that investigative journalists are focusing more on corruption in the public sector and less on the private sector. This was, however, discarded as a myth, as Myburgh pointed out that he exposed both private and public sector dealings in order to provide the full scope of involved parties.

Focusing on whistle blowers, the panel challenged the verification of whistle-blower information. Myburgh responded that journalists never use only one whistle-blower’s evidence, since that is merely the start of the investigation. Further investigation was necessary, and facts had to be verified. With that said, there is still a lot to be done with regard to the protection of whistle-blowers, he concluded.

The floor was opened to the audience, which provided the opportunity to ask questions and raise concerns about what was mentioned during the panel discussion. The audience eagerly participated in the discussion. In conclusion, Myburgh reiterated that society plays a vital role in keeping those in power to the promises they make.

After the discussion, the audience had the opportunity to have their books signed by the author.

News Archive

Fasset continues to fuel academic excellence at the UFS
2017-12-15


  Description: Fasset  read more Tags: Fasset, Accounting, INTRABAS, Finance, South African Institute of Chartered Accountants

  Programme Director: School of Accounting, Prof Hentie van Wyk, and
  Dean: Economic and Management Sciences, Prof Hendri Kroukamp
  excited about the unveiling of the Finance and Accounting Services
  Sector Education and Training Authority (Fasset)
  plaque at the School of Accounting.
  Photo: Rulanzen Martin

The School of Accounting on the Bloemfontein Campus of the University of the Free State (UFS) held an unveiling ceremony for a Finance and Accounting Services Sector Education and Training Authority (Fasset) plaque. The plaque was unveiled by UFS Rector and Vice-Chancellor, Prof Francis Petersen, and Fasset CEO, Lesego Lebuso. This was in honour of Fasset’s partnership with the UFS and its contribution towards driving academic excellence through its Intrabas projects over the past few years.
 
Funding for teaching and learning initiatives
These projects support the development of black student enrolment and performance in Accounting Studies. During the previous year, Fasset gave the UFS R54 million in funding to support teaching and learning initiatives for 960 black Accounting students. These students were enrolled for BAcc, BCom(Acc), BAcc(Hons)/PGDipCA, and BCom(Hons in Acc)/PGDipGA studies. In the same year, a celebratory ceremony was held at the South Campus for 125 Fasset-funded students to celebrate their academic excellence.
 
 Prof Hentie van Wyk, Programme Director: School of Accounting, said, “FASSET funding will give the Centre for Accounting (as it was then called) an opportunity to strengthen our current student-centred teaching model”. This seemed like a prophecy, because at the beginning of 2017, the class of 2016 BAccHons students achieved a 96% pass rate in the 2017 Initial Test of Competence (ITC) examinations of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA).

Millions contributed towards accounting degrees
In 2017, Fasset sponsored 114 students on the Bloemfontein Campus with full bursaries amounting to more than R20 million through the Intrabas bursary fund for degree qualifications in BAccHons, BComHons (Acc), BAcc, BComAcc and BComAcc Extended programmes, as well as the tutorial programme managed by the School of Accountancy. On the Qwaqwa Campus, Fasset has given more than R7 million worth of funding.
 
James Veitch, Senior Officer: School of Accounting, said, “A decision was made to rather fund less students so that they could be assisted with greater effect, and students who did not qualify for the bursaries, would still be assisted through the support programme.”

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