the Sherlock Holmes of campus security
With over three decades in campus security, Oarabile Lechuti has become a legend on the Mahikeng Campus.
History and literary fiction are made up of colourful law enforcers who serve their communities with dedication and distinction.
When writing the NWU’s history, a worthy character would be Oarabile Lechuti, one of the institution’s longest-serving employees, with over three decades of experience in campus security.
He has lived through many changes, having started at the then University of Bophuthatswana (UNIBO), which later became the NWU. Having served under nine campus security directors and managers, his institutional memory is second to none.
Keeping everybody safe
Over the years Oarabile has carried out his department’s mandate of providing essential and efficient protection services with distinction, creating a safe study and work environment for staff, students and visitors at the campus.
Since joining the university, he has worked as an access control officer and senior investigation officer, and his responsibilities now include events and operations.
Recognised for his commitment
Over the years Oarabile has received several awards for his commitment to his work.
He was recently recognised by the South African Police Service for assisting in crime reduction in Mahikeng and for assisting in the recovery of goods stolen from visiting Hanseo University students.
Aubrey Welken, a former director in the department, says Oarabile is a legend and well known for his dedication and commitment to serving the NWU with excellence.
“He believes in remedial action rather than punitive measures when students transgress.
“He is however very firm where damage to property, theft or assault cases are reported to Protection Services,” says Aubrey.
“An expert on policy and procedure matters, he never hesitates to walk side-by-side with you even when entering the lion’s den during student disruptions and protests,” he adds, noting that Oarabile is always ready to give advice on how best to deal with matters.
During his remarkable and life-long contribution to law, order and public safety, Oarabile has become known for his uncanny ability to get to the bottom of any issue he is looking into.
His investigative skills, high level of discernment and powers of deduction have been compared to those of the much-read-about Sherlock Holmes.
It is through his excellent people skills that Oarabile and his colleagues were able to quell plans for further disruptions during the #FeesMustFall protests that took place on the Mahikeng Campus.
He is also credited with making a major contribution to the reputation the NWU’s residences have for being one of the safest environments on the campus.