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30 November 2020 | Story Nonsidiso Qwabe | Photo Supplied

Acclaimed South African writer, author, and UFS research fellow Zubeida Jaffer was honoured with a lifetime achievement award for her career in journalism during the Standard Bank Sivukile Awards ceremony. 

Passion for journalism spans decades
During the award ceremony on 15 October 2020, Jaffer received the prestigious Allan Kirkland Soga Lifetime Achievement Award, which recognises a sustained and extraordinary contribution to journalism. Jaffer said she never chose journalism, but journalism chose her. She said when she first stepped into a newsroom looking for a holiday job in the 1970s, she did not know she had stepped into her future in news reporting. Since then, Jaffer has earned many accolades in the journalism industry as well as in academia. She also became an acclaimed author, and wrote her third book, Beauty of the Heart: The Life and Times of Charlotte Mannya Maxeke, during her time as a writer-in-residence at the UFS. While at the UFS, she founded the online media platform, The Journalist, a platform that provides history and context for key issues facing South African journalists. This portal also links students with academics across the country and will soon be extended to the African continent and the diaspora.

Jaffer said she felt blessed to be recognised among the many journalism pioneers in South Africa. 

“It’s extremely wonderful because it came so out of the blue. This year, with COVID-19, I was digging deep, and trying my best to keep focus. I’m very thankful. It’s made me pause, reflect, and realise that a lot of things I’ve done have been of value. When living your life, it’s not that you’re aware of that all the time. There are many people doing great things who don’t always get this kind of recognition,” Jaffer said.

Still a great need for journalists in South Africa 

Talking about journalism today, Jaffer said: “I am often overwhelmed to witness the enthusiasm and determination of young journalists across the country who come from humble backgrounds and inspire those around them. Our country is gripped in a bipolar condition. It is not clear how the healing will come, but it will. The challenge is to keep our minds in balance so that we can be strong enough to root out corruption and gender-based violence, while at the same time fully understanding our blessings as a people.”

UFS alumna Rising Star in Journalism 

In another accolade for the UFS, the Upcoming/Rising Star of the Year award went to former UFS Journalism student Brümilda Swartbooi for her article titled ‘Sy het hard vir ons gewerk’. The article highlighted the senseless killing of a woman outside her workplace, minutes after her husband dropped her off.

Brümilda Swartbooi. Photo: Supplied

News Archive

Matters approved by the UFS Council at its meeting on Friday 5 June 2015
2015-06-11

The Council of the University of the Free State (UFS) approved the following matters during its quarterly meeting on Friday 5 June 2015, which took place on the Bloemfontein Campus:

1.    The 2015 - 2020 UFS Strategic Plan.
2.    The extension of the term appointment of Prof Gert van Zyl, Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences, for a further five years.
3.    The renaming of JBM Hertzog residence to Beyers Naudé House/Huis Beyers Naudé.
4.    The naming of the new women’s residence on the Bloemfontein Campus as Harmony Residence.
5.    The name of the new hotel on the Bloemfontein Campus as ‘Kovsie-Inn’.

The Council also mandated the UFS management to lead a formal review of the Language Policy through a comprehensive process of consultation with all university stakeholders. The process will include the creation of multiple opportunities and forums for participation, as well as the formation of a university Language Committee which will receive and assess all views on the policy before making recommendations to Management and Council. The review is an open-ended process and three broad outcomes are possible - that the parallel-medium policy remains in place; that minor adjustments are made to the policy; that major changes are made to the existing policy. The Language Committee’s recommendations will be presented to Council at its November 2015 meeting.

Released by:
Lacea Loader
Director: Communication and Brand Management
news@ufs.ac.za
+27(0)51 401 2584

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