The University of the Witwatersrand announced today that its incumbent vice-chancellor and principal, Adam Habib, would remain in his position for a further five years, with the new term beginning in 2018.
The university released a statement disclosing how it had come to the decision to renew Professor Habib’s contract, praising him continually for the positive impacts he has had on the institution.
Chairperson of the Council of the University Dr Randall Carolissen affirmed the university’s confidence in Habib by saying: “Professor Habib is a dynamic leader with immense experience in managing higher education institutions within South Africa’s complex political and socio-economic context. In the last few years, he has consolidated Wits’ academic programmes, enhanced its research and innovation standing, restructured its managerial and technological operations, whilst ensuring the University’s financial sustainability.
“Wits University has made tremendous achievements in the last few years, which should not be overshadowed by the challenges that the University faced in recent months.
Despite the student protests pertaining to funding issues, the University made incredible accomplishments.” he added.
“In addition to subsidy from the state, he has ensured that Wits continues to secure additional resources from donors for teaching and research. Student funding is a priority and Professor Habib and his team are working to maximise income through creating an endowment for student funding from the possible development and/or sale of land owned by the University.
“On balance, it is my belief that Wits is a far stronger institution in 2017 than it was in 2013. Given this performance, the Council of the University has agreed to renew Professor Habib’s contract for a second term,” Carolissen continued.
He further complimented how Habib handled the biggest challenge the university has faced over the past two years — the #FeesMustFall movement and protest action — by saying: “These were extremely difficult periods for the University but I believe that Professor Habib acted at all times with integrity and with the best interests of the University at heart. He implemented Council decisions and managed difficult situations which enabled the completion of the 2016 academic programme.”
See Wits University’s full statement here.