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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

Die Dokumente, 26,27 June 2009
2009-06-26

Production: Die Dokumente
Text: Prof. Hennie van Coller
Director: Prof. Nico Luwes
Venue: Wynand Mouton Theatre

Dates & times:
26 June 2009 - 18h00
27 June 2009 - 19h30

Tickets:
R 30.00 Adults
R 25.00 Pensioners, scholars & students
R 25.00 Block bookings 10+
R 15.00 Club Theatron members

Die dokumente is a new satirical university comedy (related to the Campus, that makes use of farcical moments and include stereotyping, caricatures over intensification and the sometimes ridiculous. The production is in the styles of Dario Fo, Wyk Louw’s comedy, Nie vir geleerdes, the Commedia del Arte and Moliére.

Die dokumente focuses on a typical South African university in the times of transformation. The rector is married to the daughter of a famous poet and still feels a bit intimidated by her late father, Chairman of the S.A. Academy, famous academic and poet He is involved with his sexy assistant, while his own wife is more interested in the abilities of a young tennis player. The rector wants to get rid of her fathers old documents, but a serious academic wants to publicise the documents. This academic picks up a quarrel with a feminine professor in Afrikaans and Nederlands he gave a bad criticism on her debut as a poet

The rector wants to become the new Chair of the Academy and tries to force through transformation, must confront the institutional audit and keep his mistress happy. Come experience the power politics of a typical university while having some fun!

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