The North-West University (NWU) Debating Union on the Mahikeng Campus was recently invited to take part in the SA FM University Debate Challenge against the University of Pretoria.
The invitation is the result of the union's exceptional performance, despite this being their first venture into participating in external competitions.
The debate challenge took place on 4 November at the SABC Radio Park Auditorium in the Auckland Park studios in Johannesburg. The event was coordinated by the renowned anchor Oliver Dickson and was adjudicated by experienced debater and judge Neo Mosweu.
The debate was conducted in an Oxford style of debating which consists of two debaters or speakers and three speeches – an opening, second and closing speech. The two debaters representing the NWU were first speaker Orefile Babeile and second speaker Jeremiah Mokoena. Orefile delivered the opening and closing speech, and Jeremiah delivered the second speech.
The teams debated on the topic “Should South African citizens get to vote for constitutional justices”, and in the end, the NWU team walked away with the spoils.
Phathisa Makoba, the debate challenge organiser, says she was impressed by the NWU team's professionalism and how they represented the NWU. She also commended their NWU-branded clothing.
"We knew we could count on a good debate, and they did not let us down. We are looking forward to working with them as we will be going to Durban for our next debate where he winner of the previous debate will be competing against the University of Zululand or Durban University of Technology," she adds.
"This was a resounding victory for us and the university because it demonstrates the talent of the NWU,” says NWU Debate Union president, Boitumelo Malatji. “We will continue to expand the footprint of the NWU in the debating landscape.
“We are grateful for the Student Life department’s continued support and investment in the art of debating, and a special thank you to Phathisa who made this debate challenge a success,” adds Boitumelo.
The NWU winning debate team - Orefile Babeile and Jeremiah Mokoena.