Maverick Citizen

EASTERN CAPE

‘All indications are that premier Mabuyane’s master’s proposal was a sham’ — arrested forensic investigator

‘All indications are that premier Mabuyane’s master’s proposal was a sham’ — arrested forensic investigator
Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane has been snagged in an investigation into fake degrees at Fort Hare University. (Photo: Gallo Images / The Times / Masi Losi)

Two forensic lawyers, arrested on charges relating to ongoing criminal activity at the University of Fort Hare, say their arrests were triggered when they handed over a forensic report and a docket of documents to the Hawks detailing allegations of academic fraud against Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane.

In two more twists in the ongoing saga at the University of Fort Hare, the South African Local Government Association has withdrawn its nominee on the university council, and Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande has peremptorily summoned the entire university council to a meeting in Johannesburg on Thursday, 23 May — even though the university’s vice-chancellor is not in SA at present. 

In 2017, before he became premier, Oscar Mabuyane, then the Eastern Cape chairperson of the ANC, was ostensibly working on a thesis for a master’s degree (an MAdmin) titled A Critical Analysis of the Application of the Inter-Governmental Relations Policy: The Case of Two Eastern Cape Government Departments. 

In 2019, Horizon Forensics started a wide-ranging investigation into the ongoing situation at the University of Fort Hare. Mabuyane was by then the premier of the Eastern Cape.  

In their investigation, the forensic lawyers called Mabuyane “the Big Student”. 

When, in October 2020, a senior manager at the university expressed her concern that Mabuyane was registered for a master’s degree in Public Administration without meeting the minimum academic requirements for entry, namely an honours degree, it raised a flag for the university. This led to his deregistration.   

Horizon Forensics, however, was only commissioned by the university to investigate Mabuyane six months later and played no part in the decision to deregister Mabuyane.  

Horizon Forensics’ director, Sarah Burger, found that Mabuyane had no application for recognition of prior learning on file with the university to bridge the academic gap. 

Mabuyane’s supervisor was Professor Edwin Ijeoma. He resigned from the university after evidence was led against him at his disciplinary hearing that he had effectively defrauded the university of approximately R4.8-million. He was later arrested on a charge that he stole one of the university’s fleet vehicles, but this charge was withdrawn because of insufficient evidence. 

Mabuyane’s proposal 

According to a forensic report on Mabuyane’s thesis, there were allegations that Ijeoma was involved in the irregular registration of students and that the university had awarded them degrees in questionable circumstances. 

In their report, investigators said they found numerous emails and hard-copy documents that suggested serious irregularities in Mabuyane’s registration. Electronic files were subjected to metadata analysis, which allows digital or computer forensic investigators to understand the history of a particular electronic file, including when the file was created, modified and accessed. 

The evidence against Mabuyane was compiled from documents found in the offices of Ijeoma and his assistant, Candyce Dawes.  

“What we have discovered in assessing the available evidence is deeply tragic and adds further credence to the university’s decision to deregister Mabuyane, albeit from a completely different angle,” the report detailing the “Big Student” investigation reads. 

An email thread that began on 17 April 2018 asked Mabuyane to choose a topic for his MAdmin dissertation from two options provided by Ijeoma, but he could also choose his own topic.

Number two on this list was “An in-depth analysis of the application of the IGR Policy: The case of the Eastern Cape Government ( 2010-2015)”

On 17 July 2018, a postdoctoral student in Ijeoma’s department sent Mabuyane a proposal titled “An in-depth analysis of the application of the IGR Policy: The case of two Eastern Cape Government Departments (2010-2015)”.  

In October, Ijeoma asked Mabuyane to “complete” the proposal “as discussed”. 

Many emails followed. 

Fort Hare

Horizon owner Bradley Conradie appears in the Dimbaza Magistrates’ Court in the Eastern Cape. (Photo: Deon Ferreira)

In her report, Burger said metadata on the proposal sent by Mabuyane showed its origin as the computer of one of the students in Ijeoma’s department.

The only differences were minor changes in the title, some paraphrasing and the addition of information.

Mabuyane presented his proposal to a departmental committee. Beforehand, he requested Ijeoma to point him to the relevant parts of the proposal as he “was in trouble”. After his presentation, Ijeoma congratulated him on a job well done. 

A letter was found to motivate Mabuyane’s late registration for a PhD. This, Burger found, was generated from Dawes’ computer. 

“All indications are that Mabuyane’s master’s proposal was a sham. It was conceived, authored and constantly refined by Ijeoma and his researchers. At most, Mabuyane titivated and paraphrased here and there.

“It is not possible for Mabuyane to claim innocence and argue that he did not know what was being done for him. The evidence against him is too compelling. It is clear … that several university employees were assisting Ijeoma and Mabuyane in their attempts to deceive the university into believing that Mabuyane was doing what was expected of him as a student, not to mention a master’s student. Appropriate action will need to be taken against them,” the forensic report by Horizon reads.

Mabuyane has filed a legal review application against the decision by the university to deregister him and the Horizon forensic report.

Horizon Forensics’ owner, Bradley Conradie, said he and Burger believed their arrests were linked to their handing over evidence relating to Mabuyane to the Hawks.

Other cases 

Conradie said BCHC attorneys and Horizon Forensics were contracted in 2018 to investigate the goings-on at the University of Fort Hare.  

They made a significant impact but were frustrated by the slow pace of law enforcement. 

In an interview last week, Conradie and Burger said it was “incomprehensible” that out of about 20 cases they had referred to the SA Police Service over six years, complete with reports and detailed evidence, no arrests were made.  

“At most, only two individuals were interviewed and arrested this year regarding a case from 2019,” they said. 

Just before this year’s Easter weekend, they themselves were arrested.  

Horizon director Sarah Burger in court. (Photo Deon Ferreira)

Successes at Fort Hare 

Several criminal syndicates that had infiltrated the university, including Nigerian, local business, staff, student and politically connected syndicates, were exposed by Horizon Forensics’ investigations. About 40 employees were dismissed or resigned and 20 cases were sent to the Hawks. 

Horizon Forensics drew up a comprehensive report detailing the corrupt networks operating within the institution, which formed the basis for a submission to the President in support of a proclamation that the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) intervene. Horizon Forensics brought the SIU to the university so it could use its powers to take investigations beyond what Horizon Forensics could do, such as accessing bank accounts.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Eastern Cape Premier Oscar Mabuyane asks court to exclude him from ‘malicious’ SIU Fort Hare probe

Read more in Daily Maverick: Eastern Cape premier Oscar Mabuyane wins interdict forcing SIU to back down, pending judicial review 

As soon as the SIU started probing Mabuyane’s stint under Ijeoma, he approached the court to stop the probe, claiming that it fell outside the mandate given and signed by President Cyril Ramaphosa. 

In February, a senior prosecutor and two captains from the Hawks in East London visited Horizon Forensics’ offices in Cape Town for three days. During this time, Burger provided a statement for a case in which she was to be a witness and assisted with two other high-profile cases. This was not unusual because they had shared information with law enforcement agencies for several years, including the Hawks, the SIU, the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and the National Task Force. 

Security camera footage of the raid on Horizon’s offices showing heavily armed policemen guarding investigators. (Screengrab: Supplied)

Arrests

In what the pair described as “an unnecessarily dramatic show”, Burger and Conradie were arrested on 28 March by about 24 members of the National Task Force and the National Intervention Unit (NIU). 

They were flown to East London in a private jet. Conradie estimates that the operation cost between R2-million and R3-million.  

“As court officers, we could simply have been summoned to appear in court,” he said. “There was no need for this elaborate arrest.” 

CCTV footage of the raid on Horizon Forensics’ offices shows most of the armed members of the arresting task team sitting on couches and scrolling on their phones.  

Conradie said the search and seizure warrants used during this operation were “patently unlawful” and would be challenged in court. He said investigators spent seven hours seizing electronic devices and information at Horizon Forensics and even searched the fridge. Conradie and Burger believe investigators were looking for evidence in the Mabuyane case. 

Conradie said he received information from an NIU member that the instructions for the extreme measures taken during his arrest originated “from Pretoria”. The team that arrested him was briefed that he was “dangerous, will resist arrest and has armed bodyguards. The officer concerned then commented: ‘Now all I see is a quiet and gentle man,’” Conradie said.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Fort Hare VC says alleged criminal syndicate masterminds were connected before arriving at university 

Burger spent five nights in holding cells before the State agreed to grant her bail. Conradie spent the Easter weekend behind bars and was told his bail application would be opposed. He spent another nine days in prison with people he described as hardened criminals before he was granted bail.

Conradie said that after the Easter weekend, his attorney, William Booth, offered R100,000 in bail. This was rejected on the basis that bail was opposed. Then, nine days later when the bail hearing took place, the State indicated that it did not oppose his bail and agreed to an amount of R50,000. This meant that he spent nine additional days in prison for no reason, Conradie said.

Now he and Burger are sharing the dock with former employees and associates of the University of Fort Hare on an allegation that they had “all run and were part of a criminal enterprise”. 

But they only knew a few of their co-accused and had investigated some of them.  

Some charges against them, formulated in terms of the Prevention of Organised Crime Act, were dropped because the prosecutor did not obtain permission from the National Director of Public Prosecutions as required by law. 

Warnings 

Burger said that towards the end of 2023, Conradie, in her presence, received a telephonic warning from senior law enforcement officials that he was being targeted politically and a decision had been made to “deal with him”. 

Conradie consulted the lawyer John Riley, who advised him to take the threat seriously, given his and Burger’s work at Fort Hare. The Hawks, the SIU and the NPA also warned them, on separate occasions, that their lives were in danger given the evidence they had gathered against a diverse range of people.  

“You know,” Conradie said, “our position after the assassination of Mr Petrus Roets was that we would meet with law enforcement anywhere but in East London.” At the time of his murder, Roets — who was the fleet manager at the university — was working with Horizon Forensics to identify corrupt employees in his department at the university.  

In 2022, Conradie and Burger were urged to attend a meeting at the SIU’s offices in East London and reluctantly agreed. At a traffic light, their car was rushed by four men, one of whom brandished a pistol. They managed to speed off unharmed. The incident was later described as “a robbery that had gone wrong”. 

Discredit 

Conradie and Burger believe their arrests are an attempt to discredit them.  

“In any functioning democracy, the university could go to their local police station and complain about possible fraud and corruption. The police would do what is necessary — investigate and arrest after following due process. 

“Not in South Africa. This work has to be done by private forensic companies and even after it is done, the police do not follow it up despite all the evidence already gathered and prepared for trial,” Conradie said. 

A few weeks before Burger and Conradie were arrested, former University of Fort Hare residence manager Thobeka Portia Heshula (68), her son Ngcwengo Collin Uhuru Heshula (41) and his company, Heshula Solutions, appeared in the Alice Magistrates’ Court facing 53 counts of fraud, amounting to more than R1.5-million, and forgery and uttering.

The charges related to the awarding of tenders to the son’s company by the mother as the official responsible for appointing service providers and authorising payments to those service providers.  

They were each released on bail of R1,000. 

Conradie said that before their arrest, he and Burger were in a civil court helping the SIU to reclaim the money the university lost in the Heshula matter.   

Burger was supposed to be a witness in the civil and criminal cases. 

It is alleged that Thobeka Heshula, who has since retired from Fort Hare, had firsthand knowledge of tenders and contracts that the university needed to procure. Ngcwengo Heshula allegedly generated three quotations on his mother’s advice, creating the misrepresentation that they were from three separate entities. These quotations were allegedly issued under fictitious or fronting entities’ names. 

This scheme ensured that Heshula Solutions, or entities with ties to it, would be appointed as the university’s favoured service provider. The two accused also allegedly authorised payments of invoices submitted by alleged entities for services not rendered. An internal investigation by the university uncovered the alleged scheme and the Heshulas have, after civil proceedings in the Makhanda High Court, paid back the money with interest, totalling R2-million.   

Burger said that after Isaac Plaatjies, the axed senior director at Fort Hare, was arrested this year on fraud and corruption charges, they decided to no longer work for the university.

Read more in Daily Maverick: University of Fort Hare’s head of investigations arrested for murder and attempted murder 

Read more in Daily Maverick: Criminal enterprise at Fort Hare created an atmosphere of terror for kick-backs

“The university is rotten to the core. We wanted to give up on them several times before. They were just draining us,” Conradie said. 

 “I also want to point out that we benefited nothing from this. The university did not pay us on time. We committed our lives to this and are now treated like dirt.” 

Discussing his relationship with Plaatjies, Conradie said: “Before 2020, I had never met or heard of Isaac Plaatjies. Till today, I do not know any personal details about him. I do not know where he lives, the name of his wife and how many children he has. When I met him, he was a contractor at the university on a month-to-month basis. He had no position and no budget. By then, we had been providing services to the university since 2018.

“In December 2020, my previous partner of seven years, who ran the day-to-day operations at Horizon Forensics, suddenly announced he was leaving the country. An urgent replacement was required and Isaac Plaatjies, given his go-getter skills, was a consideration, among several other people in the forensic industry.

Heavily armed agents entering Horizon’s offices. (Sreengrab: Supplied)

“In the end, I offered Isaac Plaatjies my former partner’s shareholding (49%) and salary, which he accepted.

“I subsequently reneged on the agreement for reasons I won’t go into now, and we reached a financial settlement. That he was joining me was known to the university in January 2021 and subsequent disclosures were made.

“Had the police followed the most basic step of investigating a matter, they would have approached me and asked me for an explanation about my relationship with Isaac Plaatjies and any payments to him. I would have explained it to them with supporting evidence. They did not do so, and till today, they have not asked me for an explanation.”   

Also, read in Daily Maverick: University of Fort Hare VC’s roller-coaster ride for justice in face of murder and criminal syndicates 

Conradie and Burger appeared along with their co-accused in the Dimbaza Magistrates’ Court last month. The matter was adjourned to September “for further investigation”.

Mabuyane’s response 

Mabuyane’s spokesperson, Yanga Funani, promised to provide us with answers to a wide range of questions but has not yet done so.  

However, Mabuyane did share some information in court papers when he interdicted the SIU from questioning him and searching his office and house. 

In his affidavit, he said he “supports an investigation into corruption and maladministration at the university”. He added, “There seems to be a malicious plan to cause me damage.”  

Mabuyane objected to the investigations being run in the media and the use of “draconian” and “unfairly oppressive” measures. 

“I never claimed that I have an honours academic qualification or its equivalence,” Mabuyane said. 

One of the documents that the SIU sought from Mabuyane was “an original copy of your proposal which is a requirement for study towards a master’s degree by research”. 

Mabuyane claimed he “intends to produce this in a lawful investigation”.  

The court ordered a halt to the SIU investigation into Mabuyane but said the proclamation that mandated its Fort Hare investigation could be amended. In April, Justice Minister Ronald Lamola said this amended proclamation had been submitted in July 2023 but was still being “processed”.

Mabuyane also instituted a review of the decision to deregister him from the MAdmin course and of the Horizon Forensics report into his thesis. In these court documents, he denied using ghostwriters to write his thesis. 

Vice-chancellor’s affidavit

In an affidavit, Fort Hare Vice-Chancellor Sakhela Buhlungu supported the university’s opposition to Mabuyane’s review applications. 

He stated that the Horizon Forensics report was never submitted to the university’s Senate and played no role in the decision to deregister Mabuyane. He said Mabuyane should not have registered in the first place as he was “in flagrant breach” of admission requirements for an MAdmin degree (he didn’t have an honours degree).

The university’s counsel, Ncumisa Mayosi and Eshed Cohen, wrote in their heads of argument filed at the court that Mabuyane took so long to review the decision to deregister him that his case should fail on those grounds alone. They argued that the fact that he did not have the requisite qualifications to register for an MAdmin degree should be the end of the matter. 

NPA comment 

The spokesperson for the Eastern Cape NPA, Luxolo Tyali, said the case against Conradie and Burger was in court because the NPA had evidence linking them to crimes.  

“If they have evidence of political motivation, they can make representations to the Director of Public Prosecutions or escalate it to the National Director of Public Prosecutions. The separate case being investigated by the Hawks on allegations against Oscar Mabuyane can be best answered by the Hawks.”  

Tyali said the case of theft against Ijeoma was withdrawn due to a lack of credible evidence. “I am not aware of the fraud/corruption case. Maybe it is still with the Hawks.” 

The Hawks have not yet responded to a request for comment.

Salga withdraws from Fort Hare Council

Last week, the South African Local Government Association (Salga), which nominates a council member for the University of Fort Hare, “temporarily withdrew” its council member.

In a letter written by Salga’s Eastern Cape chairperson, Mesuli Ngqondwana, the organisation stated that while it remained committed “to continuing to play a meaningful role in enhancing the developmental mandate of the university, after careful consideration, the provincial leadership of Salga has decided to suspend its participation from the university council [to give] the institution an opportunity to address both its council and administrative challenges and significantly reduce prospects of finding our organisation being involved in the intricacies of the foregoing.

“As the leadership of Salga, we wish to reiterate our commitment to continue playing this important role and therefore look forward to lifting this suspension as soon as both leadership and administrative stability prevail within the university.” 

Buhlungu denied that there was a governance crisis at the university.

Compulsory in-person meeting

On 14 May, Nzimande sent a letter to the chairperson of the Fort Hare Council, Professor Lungisile Ntsebeza, ordering an “in-person” meeting with the full council on Thursday, 23 May at the Southern Sun Hotel at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg. 

The minister stipulated that no virtual attendance would be allowed.

He expressed his “deep concern” about the university’s stability, functionality, accountability and reputation. 

He asked for information about the vetting procedure followed before the appointment of Plaatjies as the university’s director of vetting and investigation. He also asked for an explanation of how those arrested in the corruption case worked under the vice-chancellor’s watch.

Another of the accused in the corruption case is Paul Tladi, the university’s human resources director, and the minister asked what impact his arrest and subsequent dismissal would have on disciplinary action taken at the university. 

“It is clear to me that the minister wants to get rid of me,” Buhlungu said. He said there were no administrative challenges at the university.

Sources at the university said Nzimande had asked a former professor at the institution to take over as administrator.

Buhlungu said he was in Sweden at a global vice-chancellors’ conference and it would be extremely difficult for the council members to attend a meeting on such short notice. “It will also come at a huge expense for the university,” he said.  

Nzimande’s spokesperson, Ishmael Mnisi, has not yet responded to a request for comment. DM

Gallery

Comments - Please in order to comment.

  • Pet Bug says:

    Very hard to follow the twists and turns.
    Complete sht show.

  • William Kelly says:

    Sad. Predictably so. This is why we have to have investigative journalism, heck even just journalism, to showcase stories just like this one. Braver people than I are working hard to save SA, to stem the rot, to stand up and be counted. No one else is coming, and we are on our own with a predatory government circling like sharks around the bait ball that is the tax payers pot of cash.

  • This paper keeps us informed about what’s happening around us

  • J vN says:

    Fort Hare: Along with many, many other institutions, yet another transformation success story.

  • Trevor Gray says:

    Felt like weeping after reading this! The ANC still allows Oscar M to play a role in their organization?
    The NPA and Hawks complicit in strong arm tactics makes one recognize that they are fatally flawed and compromised. You is pulling the string and where is CR as the lead of the criminal enterprise called the ANC?

  • Richard Bryant says:

    The basic question is: Does Oscar Mabuyane use a fake degree to hold onto his status and position as a very highly paid civil servant? Ask Pallo Jordan what happens when you fake a degree. In Mabuyane’s case, it’s not only his Masters degree but his bachelor’s degree as well because the requirement for admission to do the latter is a bachelor’s degree.

    The forensic evidence seems compelling that not only was his admission to register fraudulent, but that other people wrote the dissertation.

    And the silence from Ramaphosa???? Here’s one of the most senior people in his political circle and a year has passed since this matter was exposed. But it seems Ramaphosa is doing what he does best. Say one thing and do another. Send in Blade to get rid of the good guys. Kill the investigation at its source. Tell the world you are waiting for processes to complete. That you are taking action to combat corruption. Then have the forensic investigators arrested. And fire the vice chancellor. And then wait for the dust to settle. And look the other way.

    The consequences are pretty dire for the ‘learned’ premier. He needs to pay back the salary which he has fraudulently obtained over the years he has been premier. It would seem the highest qualification he has may be matric.

    In any case, they knew all along what they were dealing with. Crispin Olver exposed this character in his book How to Steal a City.

  • Denise Smit says:

    So if understood right, Ronald Lamola is also involved? How far does the rot go?

  • Luxolo Rangile says:

    We are victims of this whole Saga of Sarah Burger, Bradley Conradie and Paul Tladi and Isaac platjies, Sarah Burger was the witness of both my Disciplinary hearing and CCMA and now Labour Court. Bradley was the initiator of my hearing and the lawyers at CCMA and Labour court. They must not act as victims after they had been victimising university staff at Fort Hare and they were running HR department of Fort Hare maliciously with Tladi and Plaatjies. For further information contact me.

    • Chelle Lloyd says:

      I’m confused – how were they victimising university staff by doing what they were hired to do (by the University)? They didn’t run any department – they ran their companies and by doing so uncovered extensive fraud in all areas of the university. They would not be able to take you or anyone else to any court without the approval of their client, the university, so your anger seems very misdirected.

    • Matt Simon says:

      If you were found guilty, deal with it. If you are a disgruntled employee found guilty during ccma proceedings, approach Labour court. One can clearly see the rot at FHU, and a concerted effort by state to hamper the investigations.

    • James Leroy says:

      You get caught doing wrong, and what do you do? Play the victim card! You, Mr Rangile, are part of the problem.

  • Rae Earl says:

    The order for Conradie’s arrest “came from Pretoria”. Where specifically in Pretoria? Ramaphosa’s office? The ANC is a stinking cauldron of corruption and treasonous behaviour. South Africa simply can’t afford to give them another 5 years of this tyranny and undermining of our democratic institutions and values.

  • Impressed by your objective journalism, which in most cases is credible

  • Geoff Coles says:

    But why were Conradie and Burger arrested. Why a 24 man goon squad, armed and masked, and to whom do they work for….Ramaphosa?, the ANC, NPA, SAPS??
    All very confusing and seemingly intent is around shoring up of corruption practices at Fort Hare , the E Cape Government and its Premier. Where does Nzimande feature?

  • Nnete Fela says:

    from my reading there are no innocents here, everyone pulled their own strand to weave this sordid entanglement.
    I’m interested to know what motivation Nzimande has to go after Buhlungu. There seems to be quite a bit potting in our communist ministers’ backyard. R500K in a garbage bag, corruption in SETA’s, the corrupt shambles that is NSFAS. Seems more and more that our president is a Manchurian Candidate

  • Iam Fedup says:

    It’s more common than you think. I was a sessional lecturer for one of SA’s “top” university business schools, and the HR Director of one of SA’s cell phone companies submitted an assignment which he had copied, almost word for word, from one of his subordinates that had completed the course a few months earlier. (He had also previously failed an examination, and I was asked to reset the exam just for him. His performance was, to be blunt, barely a pass.) When the plagiarism thing happened and I exposed him to the programme director, I was called in to meet with the Dean of the Business School, who embarrassedly explained to me that we should let it ride because the cell phone company had 300 more potential delegates to come through the course, and the said HR Director was influential in deciding on the supplier. I wasn’t prepared to “let it ride”, and do I need to say that I also wasn’t invited back to lecture again? As it turned out, the cell phone company in any event shifted their business elsewhere to another business school. In the process, it was also implied that my resistance was because I was a “racist.”

    • Gerrie Pretorius says:

      Of course you were racist. If you have any integrity or principles, you are racist. Finish and klaar! And if you don’t believe me – ask the dean at that “top” business school .… again.

    • Mark Pawley says:

      Yes, I used to lecture Marketing and Investment Management at a business school and I concur. This sort of thing is common.

  • Chris VZ says:

    I think that Blade “not the sharpest knife in drawer” Nzimande has a lot to account for. This is not something new and he has probably been aware of it but chose to nothing as it wasn’t politically expedient. But now that it is an election year, he suddenly starts paying attention to his portfolio.

  • Indeed Jhb says:

    These days everybody is a ”masters” student – now we know how.
    The value of South African qualifications are being eroded by these criminals – we should just allocate a matric, degree and masters based on age, that way we will all know nothing together.

  • Gerrie Pretorius says:

    Just another day in the life and land of anc deployees and cadres. Nothing new and nothing unexpected.

    • Helen Swingler says:

      Prof Buhlungu has been working is fraught and dangerous conditions to excise the rot from FH. And now the minister wants to know why there
      are/were corrupt people working at FH on the prof’s watch. Huh? This stinks, all the way to the top. Please stay on this one, DM.

  • Lo-Ammi Truter says:

    Not surprised at all.

    Having been a working part-time student at the law faculty of UNISA and, knowing what it takes to work a full day, have a family with children and study at the same time, I am still wondering how Julius Malema got his degree out of the blue without any prior mention anywhere that he was a registered student even. Perhaps a peek at the meta data of his assignments would enlighten us as to their true origins. And, knowing how much Julius loves publicity, one wonders why he was not even once during his 3 or 4 years of study pictured in any media, including the social media of fellow students/class mates, arriving at exam venues.

    It seems (fake) university degrees have joined Breitlinger watches, imported shoes and designer suits as status symbols of the caste of clowns in recent years.

    It is time to get rid of these pretenders once and for all.

    • Malcolm Mitchell says:

      What is the urge to get a Masters degree? I say this with two doctorates at good universities to my name – it only means that you know a lot about very little!

  • Roel Goris says:

    This is the university that our dear Minister Naledi Pandor singled out for praise in her misguided and misplaced efforts to instigate anti-Israel protest at SA universities, saying that other universities should follow Fort Hare’s example. It all figures!

  • Fel D says:

    I remember a story from a family member who worked in a delivery store, the Fort Hare Kitchen dept had dealings ( may still be) with local Speciality food company Burbridge, they had ordered ‘food’ for the top brass.. only to do a huge shopping spree at the liquor store, then delivered both. Billed all as food but enough booze to drown a herd of elephants, all on taxpayers. When will these guys go to jail for wasting our money.. ?

  • Penny Philip says:

    That this is allowed to continue for so long just shows the level of corruption in the Eastern Cape. And who authorised a private jet & ‘swat’ team to effect an ordinary arrest?? The ANC has ripped the guts out of this province with corruption & maladministration, thus allowing organised crime to move in (including taxi syndicates attacking long haul bus services to the region). Nzimande needs to retire now……. everything he touches is an utter mess.

  • lizannelangenhoven says:

    14 days in jail for getting too close to the truth… can one even begin to imagine the trauma Bradley Conradie and his young family must have endured?

Please peer review 3 community comments before your comment can be posted