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UCT Council resolves to establish Mayosi Inquiry

Cape Town – The University of Cape Town Council has responded favorably to calls to establish an inquiry into the circumstances leading to the passing of the Dean of Health Sciences Professor Bongani Mayosi who committed suicide in late July.

Council Chair, Sipho Pityana, said that the  Council met on Monday, 10 September 2018 to consider  a report and recommendations of a committee of Council, headed by Advocate Norman Arendse, that considered the request for an inquiry in relation to the passing of Professor Bongani Mayosi.

The request was made by the Mayosi and Khumalo family, UCT Black Academic Caucus and Concerned Academics.

The university’s Registrar, Royston Pillay, said that Council resolved to establish an independent panel of three individuals who will review the issues raised by the stakeholder identified by Council.

This review will happen in two stages.

“Stage 1  will be a closed process, confidential to the family, and will seek to present a factual record and timeline of events from the point at which Professor Mayosi was appointed Dean to the time of his passing. This will include a review of his induction as Dean, support (if any) provided to him, his reported resignation(s), the reported non-acceptance of the resignation(s) and the reported proposal to appoint him as a scholar to lead a Centre of Excellence at UCT,” Pillay said.

Pillay said that the report emanating from this stage will only be shared with the family and they will decide whether to share it with the public or not.

“Stage 2  will not be confidential and will seek to review the systems for the management of senior leaders, induction processes and institutional support for those in leadership positions, with a particular focus on black leaders at the University, and associated institutional culture factors. Stage 2 will also seek to identify those factors that provide opportunities for UCT to learn about itself and inform institutional interventions that may be needed in the time ahead,” he continued.

The report of Stage 2 will not be confidential.

The University Executive will immediately begin the preliminary work that will
support the Stage 2 process.

“This preliminary work will delve into issues of inter alia staff
alienation, staff support and staff attrition. The preliminary work outcomes will be
presented to the review panel when it commences the Stage 2 process.”

Pillay said that they will inform the family and the representatives of the stakeholder groups about the resolutions and invite them to submit nominations for appointment as members of the review panel after which Council  will decide on nominations for appointment as members of the review panel.

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