Julius Malema graduates with BA-Honours Degree in Philosophy at Unisa. Picture: Thobile Mathonsi/ANA
Pretoria - It is graduation season, and on Wednesday three prominent South Africans were awarded for their academic achievements.

EFF leader Julius Malema

EFF members painted the ZK Matthews Hall at Unisa red in support of party leader Julius Malema, who on Wednesday night graduated with an honours degree.

Naturally, Malema stole the show as journalists flocked the graduation hall to capture the moment.

The hall burst into song and ululations as Malema, who was for years mocked for failing woodwork in high school, walked on stage. Malema was awarded his Bachelors of Arts Honours in Philosophy.

The slimmer-looking MP kneeled before Unisa principal Professor Mandla Makhanya before raising a clenched fist to the gallery, much to the appreciation of supporters.

Fellow EFF members, including national spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi, deputy president Floyd Shivambu and secretary-general Godrich Gardee, could hardly contain their excitement. They took numerous pictures and also burst into song.

Malema was all smiles when he walked on stage, stealing a glimpse of his wife Mantwa Malema, grandmother Sarah Malema and numerous cousins and aunts.

Last year, Malema attained a Bachelor of Arts in Human and Social Sciences.

The EFF excitedly shared photos of Malema’s family the leadership and even the seat Malema had been assigned for the ceremony.

Malema had started studying for his diploma and then his degree when he was still a member of the ANC and facing disciplinary charges as ANC Youth League leader.

He missed the verdict on his disciplinary hearing in November 2011, because he was writing exams. In April 2012, Malema was expelled from the ANC, after losing his appeal.

Recently Ndlozi obtained a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Political Studies at Wits.

The party’s number two Shivambu is also taking the education message to heart. He has a Masters degree in political studies from the University of Witwatersrand and has previously stated his intention to study towards a doctorate.

City manager Moeketsi Mosola after receiving his PhD in Human Movement Sciences
City manager Moeketsi Mosola after receiving his PhD in Human Movement Sciences from Tukkies. Picture: Jacques Naude / ANA

Tshwane city manager Moeketsi Mosola

After tossing his mortarboard in the air and receiving loud cheers, Tshwane city manager Moeketsi Mosola said he felt an arousing pleasure tinged with sadness and pain regarding the education crisis in the country.

Mosola was celebrating yet another auspicious achievement after being awarded a doctorate (PhD) in Human Movement Sciences in the area of Business of Sports Finance by the University of Pretoria yesterday.

“Some 30 years ago we needed to make education free.

"We still live in a country where education is a privilege, and that should not be the case.

"Government needs to make this a reality,” he said.

Mosola was among 1 807 gra- duates who received degrees, diplomas and certificates during this year’s spring graduation ceremony.

These included 142 doctorates, 427 master’s degrees and 746 honours degrees.

“This is a no-brainer for me; in a country were a lot of people were not allowed to study at higher institution level, there is no way we cannot help them, by making education free and accessible,” he said.

On a lighter note, Mosola said he accredited his degrees to lots of coffee, a tight schedule and support from his kids.

“Funnily enough I studied with my children. My daughter is doing her final year while my son is in Grade 8, also studying for exams,” said Mosola.

He said there was no better way to preach how important education was than actually doing it with the children.

When asked what was next on the cards, Mosola replied: “More studying; it never stops. I am not only doing it for myself, but to serve the people of Tshwane efficiently with the knowledge I have gained through my studies,” he said.

Mosola already boasts a Bachelor of Arts and a BA (Honours) degrees in Neuroscience and Human Bio-Psychology from Oberlin College in Ohio, US, attained in 1993, and a Master of Arts degree in Economics from the University of Houston, Texas, in 1999.

Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at Tuks, Prof Vasu Reddy, with Dr Imtiaz Sooliman
Dean of the Faculty of Humanities at Tuks, Prof Vasu Reddy, with Dr Imtiaz Sooliman, who was awarded the Chancellor’s Medal.

Gift of the Givers founder Dr Imtiaz Sooliman

Dr Imtiaz Sooliman has been awarded the Chancellor’s Medal by the University of Pretoria for his pursuit of the ideals of peace, tolerance and improving the human condition.

Each year the university council awards the Chancellor’s Medal in recognition of outstanding achievements made to a person who has made a distinguished contribution to the community.

A medical doctor, Dr Sooliman established Gift of the Givers on the instruction of a spiritual teacher in Istanbul, Turkey in 1992.

Through his philanthropic and humanitarian work locally and abroad, Dr Sooliman has become a household name in South Africa.

The Gift of the Givers has provided support to many local communities in need, especially in disaster zones like after the Knysna fires and the Alexandra flash floods and fires. Through his vision and leadership, people around the world have received care, medical assistance, disaster relief, food, water, shelter and clothing.

In recent years, Sooliman has also become increasingly involved in mediation in violent conflicts and negotiations for the release of hostages.

Sooliman warned graduates not to forget where they came from and said they should not let their qualifications get in the way of their humanity.

Pretoria News