CUT Chancellor engages in a crucial dialogue titled: "The Future South Africa We Want and Deserve!" This dialogue, held in a hybrid format, brought together key stakeholders from various sectors to discuss and deliberate on the future of our beloved country, South Africa.

CUT News
CUT Chancellor engages in a crucial dialogue titled: "The Future South Africa We Want and Deserve!" This dialogue, held in a hybrid format, brought together key stakeholders from various sectors to discuss and deliberate on the future of our beloved country, South Africa.

Dr. Vincent Maphai, CUT Chancellor, spoke at the dialogue titled "The Future South Africa We Want and Deserve!"

Dr. Vincent Maphai, CUT Chancellor, recently participated in a hybrid dialogue held by Higher Education Media Services in association with the Democracy Works Foundation and the University of Johannesburg Library. The theme was "The Future South Africa We Want and Deserve!"

The panel's primary aim was to enhance democracy and amplify the voices of citizens, academics, and civil society, empowering and engaging the public on this critical discourse.  It featured credible South Africans in various fields, including business, academia, the economy, civil society, and the media.  

Among the panellists were Dr Thabane Vincent Maphai, Chancellor of the Central University of Technology, Free State; Zingisa Mkhuma, Editor and journalist; Phathiswa Magopeng, SABC Board Director; Dr Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh, Author, podcaster, and musician. 

Notably, Tessa Dooms, a thought leader, and Director of the Rivonia Circle, joined the panel virtually, demonstrating the adaptability and inclusivity of the event. 

This diverse panel, representing a wide range of perspectives and experiences, ensured that the dialogue was inclusive and comprehensive, making participants feel included and represented.  

Dr. Vincent Maphai underscored the pressing urgency of the situation, stating that in a democracy, governments follow the noisiest, and civil society in this country has been silent. He said that the time has come to talk and suggested two things that he believes are not just necessary but also achievable.

“Firstly, safety is absolutely crucial. It is not just your responsibility and mine but our collective responsibility as citizens. We cannot guarantee safety if some of the key figures in the government are involved in criminal activities. As citizens, we must be crystal clear about who we trust in matters of safety and security. If these roles are held by criminals, or if the government itself is run by criminals, then forget about any assurances regarding safety and security,” emphasised Dr Maphai.

Secondly, he added that if the country has bigger dreams, we must ask: “Can we live in a country where we are absolutely sure no single citizen goes hungry? Is that a big ask? I believe we can achieve that in six months. Poverty is not a reality. It is a political creation. And we can uncreate it.  We have the ability to make changes. And it will require greater strength to ensure that within six monghts no South African goes to bed hungry. 

Regarding the newly formed Government of National Unity (GNU), Dr. Maphai reminded attendees that political parties will always highlight their differences and why they believe they are superior to other parties. “I believe that national unity in this country will not come unless ordinary society takes it upon themselves as one of their primary duties. And that is why I believe the call for national dialogue is not just for ongoing discussions. It is a call for taking critical action. Can we sit down and talk about South Africa we would all be proud of?” remarked Dr Maphai.

The dialogue presented an opportunity for concerned and passionate South Africans, academics, civil society, and media professionals, who are critical in shaping the country's future.

Panelists: From left: Phathiswa Magopeni, SABC Board Director; Dr Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh, Author, podcaster, and musician; Dr Thabane Vincent Maphai, CUT Chancellor and Zingisa Mkhuma, Editor and journalist. 

Uploaded: 07 July 2024
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