Campus celebrates 10th anniversary with public lecture

Annette Willemse -- Thu, 08/21/2014 - 12:01

Campus celebrates 10th anniversary with public lecture

The year 2014 is a red-letter year for South Africa and the North-West University (NWU). Not only is South Africa celebrating 20 years of democracy, but the North-West University is also celebrating ten years since the merger and incorporation process that led to its inception in 2004.


Warren Makgowe, Dr Danny Jordaan, Prof Linda du Plessis, Dr Tony Kirkbride and Anton Gilmore

The North-West University officially came into being on 1 January 2004. It was part of the national government’s broader plan to transform higher education, with the aim of using resources more effectively and addressing past imbalances. The institutions that came together to create the NWU were the Potchefstroom University for Christian Higher Education (PU for CHE) and the University of Northwest (UNIBO). The staff and students of the Sebokeng Campus of the Vista University were also incorporated.

It is against this backdrop that the Vaal Triangle Campus recently hosted a public lecture featuring Dr Danny Jordaan – the president of the South African Football Association (SAFA), as the keynote speaker. The overarching theme of the public lecture was – ‘The role of education and sport in nation building’. The other speakers at the event were Dr Tony Kirkbride – the manager of the South African Sports Technology Centre, and Mr Anton Gilmore who runs the Fight with Insight program.

More about the speakers

Dr Daniel “Danny” Jordaan is a renowned sports administrator and a former lecturer, politician and anti-apartheid activist. In 1997, Dr Jordaan was elected Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the South African Football Association (SAFA). He was instrumental in transforming the economy of South Africa’s football, raising revenue from the sport from US$ 3.2 million to US$ 35 million. He furthermore led South Africa’s bid to host the 2006 FIFA World Cup, narrowly losing out to Germany but gaining respect internationally for his work. Having led South Africa to a successful bid in 2004 -  for the right to host the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Dr Jordaan was then elected CEO of the South Africa 2010 Organising Committee for the 2010 showpiece.

Dr Jordaan has served on the Marketing and Television Board of FIFA since 1998. He is also a member of the International Marketing Council. In 2000, he won the South Africa’s marketing person of the year award, while in 2001 he was the recipient of the Presidential Sport Achievement Award from former President Thabo Mbeki. In 2004, Dr Jordaan was voted 44th in the Top 100 Great South Africans and Newsmaker of the Year.

He holds a BA degree from the University of the Western Cape, and an Honours Degree from the University of South Africa (UNISA). He is the recipient of three honorary doctorates.

Dr Tony Kirkbride is the manager of the Sports Technology Centre at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research in Pretoria, South Africa. He holds a PhD in Biomaterials and is a registered Chartered Engineer with a specialist interest in Notational Analysis. He is a Fellow of the World Technology Network and emigrated from the UK to South Africa in 1983.

Dr Kirkbride manages a specialist group that develops and applies modern sports analysis products and services to a worldwide client base. Many national teams, federations and governing bodies rely on these analyses to monitor or improve performance. Products developed under his leadership include, Soccerstat, Rugbystat, Hockeystat, and the flagship products of Crickstat and Umpirestat.

Mr Anton Gilmore runs the Fight with Insight program. He is a renowned boxing promotor, who challenged Cassius Baloyi in 1997 in Johannesburg for the Super Bantamweight World Championship. As a firm believer that community work is essential to wean young people off from crime and violence, his motto is: “If you fight on the street, then you can’t fight in my gym.”

Fight with Insight is a boxing project for young offenders who have completed their diversion programme – an element of the South African youth justice system. Young people often enter the diversion programmes via the courts and are thus not necessarily willing participants. But by offering boxing as a follow-on programme, Fight with Insight aims to use what may have been responsible for getting the young offenders into trouble in the first place – violence and aggression – as the tool to help them make alternative and positive decisions about their future and their relationship with others.

There are rules in boxing that parallel those in life: respect for others, abiding by the referee’s decisions, accepting the judge’s verdict and when the fight is over, the need to move on. The participants are introduced to positive role models from their experiences at Fight with Insight and are able to follow the educational messages in a positive and enjoyable context. The belief is that young people need to be guided to behave appropriately through life-skills training rather than through a punitive criminal justice system.


Dr Danny Jordaan Dr Tony Kirkbride Anton Gilmore

Warren Makgowe, Director Marketing and Communication

Prof Linda du Plessis The programme director for the event, Matomi Kganakga