NWU Vaal academics applauded as top spokespersons

Annette Willemse -- Mon, 07/20/2015 - 14:12

NWU Vaal academics applauded as media contributors

The North-West University’s (NWU) annual Spokespersons of the Year awards honours the university’s experts for sharing their knowledge and commenting on current affairs in the media. 

This year’s awards were handed over during a cocktail event on 16 July at the Institutional Office in Potchefstroom.  Academics, researchers and other faculty members were recognised for their positive contribution towards uplifting and enhancing the image of the NWU. The total prize money – for the different categories, amounted to R90 000 and saw a senior staff member of the Vaal Triangle Campus (NWU Vaal), Prof Elda de Waal take home the spoils in the category: “New voice of the NWU”.  In the "Incentive Awards" category – for individuals who have just entered the media space, Dr IIyayambwa Mwanawina – also from the NWU Vaal, was recognised as one of the winners. Both these staff members are part of the Faculty of Humanities – Prof De Waal as a member of the School of Educational Sciences and Dr Mwanawina as a member of the School of Basic Sciences.

Prof Elda de Waal with guest speaker, Ndumiso Ngcobo Dr Illyayambwa Mwanawina

Of all NWU spokespeople in all the categories combined, being print, broadcast and online, the person quoted the most in 2014 was Prof André Duvenhage, director in the research focus area Social Transformation and professor in political studies on the Potchefstroom Campus.

Mr Theo Venter, special advisor in the office of the vice-chancellor and part-time lecturer, received the award for the second most-quoted person while Prof Raymond Parsons, lecturer at the Potchefstroom Business School, was the third most-quoted person.

Awards were given in the following categories:

  • Most quoted person in the print media
  • Most quoted person in broadcast media
  • Most quoted person in online media
  • New voice of the NWU
  • Creating a spike in media coverage
  • Incentive awards

The guest speaker at the event was acclaimed novelist and columnist Ndumiso Ngcobo.

More about the guest speaker

Former high school teacher turned satirist, Ndumiso Ngcobo is a man of note and high acclaim. Apart from being South Africa’s favourite columnist, he entertains audiences around the world with his amusing anecdotes, outlandish opinions and furiously funny tales.

Ngcobo is a creative phenomenon of the new South Africa. A one-time corporate lackey who used to write amusing emails for fun, he decided a change in career was in order and authored the bestsellers “Some Of My Best Friends Are White” and “Is It Coz I’m Black?” before securing a columnist’s position with amongst others the Sunday Times and the Mail and Guardian. He was also a radio presenter on Power FM and writes for television.

Ndumiso Ngcobo