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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

UFS Council elects new Chairperson
2017-01-27

Description: Mr Willem Louw and Nthabeleng Rammile Tags: Mr Willem Louw and Nthabeleng Rammile

Mr Willem Louw, new Chairperson of the Council
of the University of the Free State, and Dr Nthabeleng
Rammile, new Vice-Chairperson.
Photo: Stephen Collett

The Council of the University of the Free State (UFS) elected Mr Willem Louw as the new Chairperson during a special meeting on Friday 20 January 2017. He was Vice-Chairperson of the Council since 13 March 2015. Dr Nthabeleng Rammile was elected Vice-Chairperson at the same meeting, making her the first woman in the history of the university elected to this position.

The election of Mr Louw comes after the announcement by Justice Ian van der Merwe at a Council meeting on 2 December 2016 that he will be stepping down as Chairperson on 31 December 2016.

Mr Louw has served on the Council since 11 September 2009 and was elected as member of the Executive Committee of the Council on 18 November 2011. He furthermore serves on the Council’s subcommittees for Audit and Risk Management, and Honorary Degrees.

In accepting his election as Chairperson, Mr Louw said that he appreciates the trust Council has bestowed on him. “It is a privilege and honour to lead Council and I look forward to the challenge. With the support of Dr Rammile and the rest of the Council, I endeavour to ensure that the university management is assisted in the governance of the university and that the Council plays its governance role fully at all times,” he said.

“The UFS is privileged to have Mr Louw and Dr Rammile leading its Council at such a crucial time in the South African higher-education sector. Their combined experience will be of great benefit to the university community,” said Prof Nicky Morgan, Acting Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the UFS.

Mr Louw is an Associate of the Transnet Centre for Business Management of Projects at the University of Stellenbosch Business School and a non-executive Director of Group Five Limited. He was previously Managing Director of the technology business unit and a member of Group Management at Sasol, where he worked from 1985 until 2011. He is a member of the South African Council for the Project and Construction Management Professions and a Fellow of the South African Academy of Engineering. Mr Louw received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Civil Engineering from Stellenbosch University and his MDP (Management Development Programme in Project Management) from UNISA. He is currently enrolled for a PhD in Business Management and Administration at the University of Stellenbosch Business School.

Dr Rammile has served on the Council as representative of the religious communities since 1 January 2016. She is also member of the Council subcommittees for Audit and Risk Management, and Naming. She obtained a PhD in Brand Management at the UFS, where she also lectured in the Department of Business Management from 2003 to 2014. She is a pastor at Global Reconciliation, where she is responsible for women’s ministry, community outreach projects, and multimedia.

Mr Louw will serve as Chairperson of Council until 31 December 2018, and Dr Rammile will serve as Vice-Chairperson until 12 March 2018.

Released by:
Lacea Loader (Director: Communication and Brand Management)
Telephone: +27 51 401 2584 | +27 83 645 2454
Email: news@ufs.ac.za | loaderl@ufs.ac.za
Fax: +27 51 444 6393

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