North-West University (NWU) Council statement with reference to the tragic drowning of Thabang Makhoang
Institutional Office – During an extraordinary meeting of the Council of the NWU held on 8 February 2012 at the Indaba Hotel in Johannesburg, Council expressed its sincerest condolences with the next of kin following the tragic death of Thabang Makhoang.
Although this incident is considered an unfortunate tragedy, it was stressed that the drowning occurred during a social event for first years only and not as part of an initiation practice. Council emphasised that any form of initiation or initiation practices at any of the NWU’s three campuses are strictly forbidden. The policy of the NWU in this regard is emphatically stressed and is known to all students and staff. Should malpractices occur, Council has pledged its support to management in acting decisively against transgressors.
Council reiterated its commitment to support the family of the late Thabang Makhoang in the most comprehensive way possible, and also requested management to explore possibilities to reach out and support the community of Tswelelang.
The Council also welcomed the decision of the Minister of Higher Education and Training, Dr Blade Nzimande, to launch a formal investigation, and pledged to do everything in its power to support this investigation.
In addition, Council agreed to arrangements by management to embark on an independent investigation, to be conducted by a team of senior advocates. The terms of reference for this investigation will be established by the Executive Committee of Council.
Issued by the North-West University Council
Enquiries: Mr Peet van der Walt, Chairperson, North-West University Council
082 465 2381
Dr Theuns Eloff, Vice-Chancellor, North-West University
082 806 4956
Date: 9 February 2012