False claims litter premier's profile

2014-01-24 12:15
Mahikeng - North West Premier Thandi Modise’s official "profile" claims she is currently studying towards a masters degree in economics, that she attended a “special leadership course” at the “University of Jordan” in the United States and that she has a “certificate of a trainer in military training” and a “certificate in gender studies”.

None of the claims are true.

The profile appears on the official South African government website, the website of the government communication service, the North West provincial government, and as a Who’s Who Southern Africa entry.

There is evidence that the profile has been circulating unchecked for a number of years.



A screengrab of Modise's profile on the North West province's website.

An early PDF version of the profile, which is archived on the website of South Africa’s Institute for Security Studies, refers to Modise as the speaker of the North West provincial legislature, a position she held before being appointed premier in November 2010. On closer scrutiny, the document’s embedded file data reveals it may have been created as early as August 2006.

'Little inaccuracies'

Contacted by Africa Check this week, Modise’s spokesperson, Lesiba Kgwele, admitted the inaccuracies.

But, he claimed, the premier was completely unaware of the contents of her official biography which, he said, had been drawn up by her communications team.

He attempted to downplay what he described as “little inaccuracies”.

Kgwele said Modise had a B.Comm degree in industrial psychology and economics, which she obtained from the University of South Africa (Unisa) in 1989.

A university official - who asked not to be named - told Africa Check that Unisa’s records indicate Modise obtained a B.Comm degree in industrial psychology and “business economics” - an "easier" subject than  economics - in 1988. She also registered for an LLB degree in 2007 but was absent from the exam and did not complete her studies.

Kgwele admitted that Modise was not “currently” studying towards a masters degree in economics, as stated in her official profile. He claimed she abandoned her masters studies  fifteen years ago in “1998 or 1999” when she “took on extra responsibilities in parliament”.

False claims

He admitted that Modise did not hold a “certificate of a trainer in military training”, as claimed in the profile.

Nor does she hold a “certificate in gender studies”. Kgwele speculated the entry may have been mistakenly included in her profile because of her work as a “gender activist”.

Kgwele admitted that Modise did not attend a “special leadership course” at the “University of Jordan in United States of America”. No such university appears to exist.

Kgwele claimed Modise had in fact attended a leadership course at the United Nations University (UNU) in Jordan in 2000. But Brendan Barrett, a spokesperson for the university, was unable to confirm this.

According to Barrett, a women’s leadership course was held at the UNU’s training institute in Jordan in June 2000.

A second course on “leadership for post-conflict peace building” was held there in November 2000. But, he added: “Since the institute is no longer in operation, we do not have a record of participants.”

Late on Thursday, Kgwele sent Africa Check an amended version of Modise’s official profile which now claims that she obtained certificates in security studies from the Naval University in Montreal in 1998/99. We have been unable to find any record of such a university in Montreal, Canada.

Conclusion - Modise’s CV raises serious questions

Four of the five academic accomplishments listed in Modise’s official profile are false or inaccurate.

Despite this, the document has been published on official South African government websites and appears to have been circulating for some time.

The premier’s spokesperson says she was unaware of the “little inaccuracies” in the profile and blamed her communications team for the “errors”. But it seems unlikely that such a personal document could have been drafted and published without Modise’s involvement and consent.

Key questions remain. Where did the premier’s office obtain the list of qualifications it included in the profile, if not from Modise?

Why did government fail to verify the accuracy of the profile before publishing it online and distributing it? And how much did the premier really know?
Read more on:    thandi modise  |  mahikeng
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
199 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

10 facts about swimming you didn't know

This will make you want to jump right into the pool.

 
 

Where were you when you last felt alive?

Snors with a cause - creating awareness of male health
Inspiring: Rock climbing with just one leg
Watch! Skateboarders racing cyclists
Exciting new zipline for Cape Town!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Save up to R2100 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

TV Series – 2 for R299

Loads of hot titles to choose from. Shop now!

Hot offer: Up to 50% off irons

Save up to 50% on all Philips irons. While stocks last. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Toys 4 for the price of 3

Buy 4 toys and get the cheapest FREE! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may be doing the work and playing the game, but your innovative mind is on a far away planet planning the next big thing....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.