#AmINext takes centre stage at UFS alumni awards

Photo: Roodt Architects.
The Chancellor of the University of the Free State (UFS) and distinguished academic, Khotso Mokhele, added his voice to the call for immediate action against the scourge of gender-based violence in the country this weekend.

Mokhele shared how well-known businesswoman and medical doctor, Thandi Ndlovu, revealed to her friends a few days before her death that she allegedly had been physically abused by her husband for many years.

He said this at the UFS’ 37th Chancellor’s Distinguished Alumni Awards at the university’s Centenary Complex in Bloemfontein this past Saturday. According to Mokhele, Ndlovu was accompanied by bodyguards prior to her death, following threats allegedly made by her estranged husband. The businesswoman succumbed to injuries sustained in a horrific car crash in Rustenburg, North West, on August 24. She was a veteran of the ANC’s military wing, uMkhonto weSizwe (MK), and a successful businesswoman who founded the Motheo Construction Group in the late 90s.

Mokhele says Ndlovu was known, amongst others, for being one of the fastest when it came to assembling an AK47, but had kept quiet for years about the abuse she suffered. This as hundreds of women in the Free State have taken to the streets on Monday (September 9), protesting violence against women and children led by Premier Sisi Ntombela and Executive Mayor of Mangaung Metro Olly Mlamleli. The murder of UCT student, Uyinene Mrwetyana, has been the catalyst for several demonstrations around the country.

Mokhele is amongst eleven other honourees which include professional netball player and dietician, Karla Pretorius, Magistrate Ryan Ishmail, author Jaco Jacobs and broadcaster, Angie Khumalo, amongst others. The recipient of the Chancellor’s Distinguished Alumnus of the Year is author and academic, Riana Scheepers, while the Executive Management Award recipient is Professor of Dietetics, Corinna Walsh.

OFM News/Olebogeng Motse