Council decisions around senior leadership posts

13 July 2023 | Norman Arendse

Dear members of the UCT community

I took over as Chair of Council this month. It is not only a privilege to return to the University of Cape Town (UCT) Council after I had served in the preceding term, but it is also an honour to be tasked with the responsibility as Chair. I look forward to working with the rest of the dedicated Council members in discharging our fiduciary responsibilities.

As we attend to one of the immediate tasks of ensuring stability at senior leadership level, I write to update you regarding decisions taken by Council around the roles of Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Teaching and Learning (DVC: T&L) and the Vice-Chancellor.

Regarding the vacant post of DVC: T&L, Council resolved to endorse the position description for this post, having noted the advice from the Institutional Forum that the proposed selection committee has been constituted as prescribed by UCT policy and that the committee is representative in terms of diversity, experience and expertise requirements. Council member Mr Ezra Davids will chair the selection committee and the selection process will commence shortly. This is a key senior post at UCT and once appointed the incumbent will hold executive portfolio responsibility for the teaching and learning component of UCT’s academic core business. Council is confident that this selection and appointment process will run smoothly and that a substantive appointment will be made in due course. In the meantime, an acting DVC appointment has been approved and will be announced by the Vice-Chancellor (interim).

Council also resolved that the search and selection process for the post of Vice-Chancellor should commence as soon as possible. The selection process is informed by an existing UCT policy and includes necessary consultation and process steps that must be followed. Council will ensure that the process is conducted as prescribed and will make every effort to ensure that the search for UCT’s next Vice-Chancellor is conducted thoroughly and expeditiously. Council is fully aware of the importance of an appointment of the most senior executive officer of the university and recognises that it is in UCT’s interest that the process concludes ahead of the current Council’s term of office coming to an end on 30 June 2024. This is an important consideration and hence the need to commence the process without undue delay.

In the meantime, Council is fully supportive of the interim leadership arrangement currently in place with Emeritus Professor Daya Reddy holding the reins as Vice-Chancellor (interim) during this crucial period in UCT’s history. We appreciate the effort that the UCT community has made, and will no doubt continue to make in the process of ensuring that our university continues to thrive.


Norman Arendse (SC)
Chair of Council

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