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CEO's message | Member profiles | Awards Ceremony
Premier corporate governance conference | Integrated Reporting Awards
Important dates in 2016 | Enrol with CSSA in 2016!

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CEO's message

Stephen Sadie
CEO, CSSA

A busy ending to 2015
I hope you enjoy reading our final eZine of the year. This edition captures the highlights of the last quarter of 2015.

1. Awards Ceremony
The Awards Ceremony, on 30 September 2015, was attended by some 200 guests. As we stood on the stage and called the graduates up, one was filled with a sense of hope that these new graduates will be the ones to take the profession to greater heights. They will have to deal with a business world that is undergoing tremendous change. They will have to deal with the challenges of major technological breakthroughs and disruptive new business models. Slow economic growth is impacting on all businesses. The mining industry is shedding jobs at an alarming rate. At the same time, corruption seems be spreading its ugly tentacles everywhere making the job of a governance professional and accountant so much more difficult.

2. Premier Corporate Governance Conference
This conference has continued to live up to its name. There was an amazing line-up of speakers. One of the sessions that both sporting and non-sporting delegates alike found fascinating was the Governance in Sport session. Dr Ali Bacher gave a candid account of his early days as a cricket administrator. He said that he often woke up in the morning and made major decisions affecting cricket entirely on his own. Over the years, however he began to understand the importance of corporate governance processes. He witnessed the meltdown of Cricket South Africa (CSA) in the IPL bonus saga. However he spoke fondly of the courage of the former chairman of CSA, Dr Mtutuzeli Nyoka, who was isolated by the board over his refusal to accept poor governance. If you haven’t decided on your holiday reading yet, I can recommend the book Deliberate Concealment by Dr Mtutuzeli Nyoka, which gives an insider’s account of what happened in CSA. The boardroom shenanigans will be of interest to both cricket supporters and non-supporters alike.

Dr Robin Petersen, of the SAFA Development Agency spoke about developments in soccer and how SAFA works. The implosion of FIFA over the past months have shown the whole world what can go wrong in an organisation when corporate governance is discarded. Barry Mocke, formerly of Cycling SA, dealt with the issue of doping in cycling and how Lance Armstrong’s confession turned the world of cycling upside down. Lastly, Dr Ishmail Jakoet, the company secretary of SARU, shared his experiences of sport administrators learning about governance.

Delegates also found the second panel discussion on International Corporate Governance intriguing.  They realised that some of the issues we encounter in Southern Africa are similar to those in other parts of the world.

Ansie Ramalho, of the King IV Task Team, spoke about King IV, which should be out for public comment early in 2016 and will probably be launched in the last quarter of 2016. This will be a key issue for all governance professionals in 2016.

3. Integrated Reporting Awards
Over 400 guests were present at the Montecasino ballroom on 11 November to experience the handing out of awards to the ten category winners. There was an interesting moment as Mervyn King walked up to the stage to hand over the award to the overall winner, Barclays Africa Group Ltd. There was resounding applause as he was acknowledged as being the driving force behind integrated reporting both in SA and internationally. The Integrated Reporting Awards is one of the ways that companies are learning about the relatively new integrated reporting. Those who compile integrated reports go through the winning reports very carefully to see what it is that those companies are getting right.

President, Johann Neethling, spoke on how CSSA had kept these awards going for the past 59 years. We have much to be proud of in our history and have strong foundations to build on to take the profession forward to face the challenges of the 21st century.

As usual we have profiled two of our members, this time from KZN.

I wish all of you a good break as you spend time with your loved ones over the holiday period.

Member profiles

Karen Baldwin
FCIS
Senior Company Secretarial Consultant, Statucor (Pty) Ltd, KZN

Background and studies

As I didn’t have the opportunity to study full time after high school, I studied various courses on a part time or correspondence basis while working full time.

I completed my CSSA qualification in 2015 (having started in 2008 with CSSA), and was granted FCIS membership in July 2015, as well as studying towards my other passion (creative writing), having earned a certificate in Journalism and Creative Writing through Intec College in 2007/2008. I also obtained a Diploma in Business Management through Varsity College.

I initially wanted to follow the accounting route (and started out studying towards a B Com Accounting after high school), but realised that I was trying to fit myself into a role I wasn’t really all that suited for – or passionate about.

My early career started out in administration, support, bookkeeping and accounting roles; however, I was appointed into a company secretarial role in 2012 where I believe my career finally gained traction. I was fortunate enough to be mentored by an exceptional company secretary and was eventually given the opportunity to take over from him in an acting capacity in July 2013 when he retired – I gained a wealth of experience during this time, having had the opportunity to deal with a wide variety of issues and functions within the role.

Can you describe briefly what your current job entails?

My main role is to provide board support (company secretarial, governance and administrative advice, guidance and support) to a wide variety of entities, while also dealing with day-to-day compliance-related matters for clients.

What do enjoy about your career? What are your greatest challenges from day to day?

I thoroughly enjoy the diversity that the role of a Chartered Secretary entails – there is unlimited potential in this role as well as opportunities to learn, and also assist companies, directors and executives with a plethora of topics/issues. I love the research aspect of the role, and being able to help directors, entities and their various stakeholders manage their governance and compliance matters in the best (and most efficient) manner possible.

The challenges experienced are often related to a lack of understanding of what a Chartered Secretary is and does, so I feel we definitely need to do more to bring more attention to the role(s) we play and the expertise we are able to bring into the boardroom and to the business world as a whole.

Why did you choose the CSSA qualification/how has the course contributed to your career?

I chose the CSSA qualification as I felt that the subjects that form part of the curriculum were more suited to me, my personality, and my specific talents. Ethics and governance are of particular importance to me, so I felt that this qualification was best suited to allow me to pursue my goals – and would, at the same time, allow me to understand the inner workings of business as a whole (from corporate law to accounting).

Why would you recommend the qualification to others?

I would recommend this qualification to others as it covers a diverse range of subjects, and doesn’t limit you to a particular field of work. You have the option of going into a variety of fields, from accounting to tax to governance – and, of course, company secretaryship. Being part of an Institute such as CSSA is also invaluable from a credibility perspective. I also believe the standard set by the Institute in terms of its accreditation and academic criteria is very high and thus CSSA graduates are of a very high calibre.

What is your view on the role of the Chartered Secretary in the work place of today?

I believe the Chartered Secretary has a central role to play in ensuring good governance and proper administration within entities falling short in any category, be it good governance, ethics, board effectiveness, management/financial controls or administration (to name a few), could result in entities facing massive issues in the future. The Chartered Secretary can play a key role in ensuring the systems are put in place to manage and mitigate potential risks, protect companies and directors (and thus all stakeholders), and ensure that companies are following – and are seen to be following – principles of good governance and sound ethics.

Any inspirational anecdotes for fellow members and students?

This particular career isn’t one of the easiest; however, it is rewarding to know that one is part of creating a better society (and better business) by trying to ensure that at the core, good governance and ethics are maintained.

It is a very noble path we walk.

How do you enjoy spending your leisure time?

I am an avid reader, and whenever possible I exercise my creative writing talents through blogging and working on writing novels. I also practice martial arts, and enjoy various outdoor activities such as hiking and camping.

Member profiles

Chanelle Cherry
ACIS
Assistant Company Secretary, Mr Price Group

Background and studies

I completed my degree majoring in General and Industrial Psychology at the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in 2006.  This was merely a degree with no meaning as I struggled to find employment without any working experience.  Life fortunately has a way of leading you to your destiny. In 2007, I applied for a position within the company secretarial department for a reputable auditing firm.  This was the defining moment in my career as I developed a deep passion for the company secretarial role.  Intrigued to learn more, I pursued a qualification with CSSA.  Through hard work, dedication and much perseverance, I achieved my post graduate degree and have recently been elected as an Associate Member.

Can you describe briefly what your current job entails?

Currently, I am Assistant Company Secretary for Mr Price Group Limited. This entails ensuring ongoing statutory compliance for the company and the subsidiary companies, including the MRP Foundation, a non-profit company.  As the Group continues to expand, a large part of my focus is on research and engagement with foreign company secretarial consultants on the legislative requirements for forming new subsidiary companies beyond South Africa. This includes all tax related registrations, obtaining trading licences, registering all associates for workmen’s compensation and social security and ensuring ongoing compliance within the respective countries.

What do enjoy about your career? What are your greatest challenges from day to day?

Each day brings new learning.  It’s not just remotely dealing with the CIPC, taking minutes, etc, it’s uncovering the legislative framework governing foreign countries and how these differ from local legislation.  My greatest challenges would be having to meet all the company and tax registration deadlines in order for the business to commence trade whilst having to overcome external limitations.

Why did you choose the CSSA qualification/how has the course contributed to your career?

All company secretaries should be affiliated to CSSA. It’s an internationally recognised qualification and highly recognised Institute. The knowledge gained from the CSSA study material has been invaluable and has provided a solid foundation on which to build.

What is your view on the role of the Chartered Secretary in the work place of today?
The role of the company secretary is providing guidance to the directors on their duties and responsibilities, keeping an arm’s length from the board of directors.

Why would you recommend the qualification to others?

It would improve your level of competence and enable you to add value to your CV and the business world.

Any inspirational anecdotes for fellow members and students?

Don’t give up, there were many before you who have endured what you may think is difficult now, but when you look back with your qualification in your hand you can say “I did it!”

How do you enjoy spending your leisure time?

Being outdoors with my family, seeing my kids achieve their milestones and lots of time in the gym.

Awards Ceremony

Graduates, prize winners and their guests were warmly welcomed by Johann Neethling, president, to the Awards Ceremony held on Wednesday, 30 September 2015 at the Wits School of Education.  Approximately 200 people attended the ceremony. After the Awards Ceremony the guests had the opportunity to relax, allowing them to share their success with their loved ones and fellow colleagues while enjoying a Christmas themed dinner.  Congratulations to all graduates and prize winners.

CSSA Directors, Sikkie Kajee, Nicky Edmunds, Johann Neethling and Shamida Smit

Baldwin Masetlha, Shamida Smit look on while Johann Neethling caps Florence Dzimwasha

1st PRIZE WINNERS – OCTOBER 2014

 

Communication

Evelyn Baiden-Amissah

Economics

Fiona Eaton

General Principles of Commercial Law

Nemnqophiso Sobayeni

 

Herbson Machingura

Taxation

Tennyson Mucheka

Management Principles

Nicole Spruijt

Managing Information Systems

Kgaogelo Thipe

Advanced Commercial Law

Elizabeth Cullinane

Management Accounting

Lindiwe Mkhize

Corporate Financial Management

Evans Mushonga

Corporate Secretaryship

Felicity Ziga

Corporate Governance

Adda Angula


1st PRIZE WINNERS – MAY 2015

 

Financial Accounting I

Fiona Eaton

Communication

Nomandla Mbanjwa

Economics

Zandra Swart

 

Auxcillia Manyika

Management Principles

Cynthia White

Managing Information Systems

Mxholisi Dube

Advanced Commercial Law

Liane De Witt

Management Accounting

Oarabile Mokgosi

 

Nonsikelelo Mlilo

Corporate Administration

Tristan Parsadh

Corporate Financial Management

John Williams

Corporate Secretaryship

Jabulani Makhaye

Corporate Governance

Ayanda Ceba

Premier corporate governance conference 2015


CSSA held its 2015 Premier Corporate Governance Conference at the Wanderers Club, Illovo on 27 and 28 October 2015.  There were over 200 delegates at one of the largest corporate governance conferences in 2015.  Chris Gibbons, the Master of Ceremonies, challenged the speakers with insightful questions, supplemented by delegates at the Conference.

Marimba Band CSIA Council Members Cocktails
Andre van der Zee (Trifecta), Stephen Sadie, Tshediso Matona Ansie Ramalho (King IV Task Team) International panel
David Lewis (Corruption Watch), Michael Katz (ENSafrica)
Panel discussion - Governance in sport Carina Wessels (Past president CSSA)  

Integrated Reporting Awards 2015


The Integrated Reporting Awards took place at the Montecasino ballroom on Wednesday 11 November 2015. Hosted by Chartered Secretaries Southern Africa in partnership with the JSE Limited, the Integrated Reporting Awards have been rewarding excellence in corporate reporting since 1956. 

The fabulous MC for the evening was comedian Alan Committie and guests were serenaded by the talented Soweto Opera Quadro during dinner. VIP guests included Mervyn King and Songezo Zibi (Editor, Business Day).

Johann Neethling, President of CSSA, welcomed the guests and the key note speaker for the evening was Donna Oosthuyse, Director of Capital Markets JSE.

Congratulations to all the 2015 winners.

Montecasino ballroom

CSSA President, Johann Neethling, welcomes guests Songezo Zibi, Business Day Editor, addresses the crowd
MC/comedian Alan Committie Mervyn King and Karyn Southgate (CSSA Senior Vice President) Keynote speaker – Donna Oosthuyse, Director Capital Markets JSE
Zubair Wadee, convenor of judges and Director (PwC) Stephen Sadie (CEO CSSA) announces the winners Overall winner: Mervyn King presents the winner award to Nola Richards, Barclays Africa Group
Top 40: Jacky Cuffley (Link Market Services) presents the winner award to Stephen Brickett, Standard Bank Group Ltd Public sector winner: Fasset From left, Sello Malatsi, Lesego Lebuso, Cheryl James and Zandile Skosana Large state-owned company winner: Transnet SOC Ltd
Small state-owned company winner: Development Bank Southern Africa Ltd Soweto Opera Quadro serenade the crowd Small cap: Howard Fox presents the winner award to Alastair Petticrew, Hulamin Ltd
Mid Cap: Austin Whiteman (Diligent) presents the winner award to Lelanie Sherman, Life Healthcare Group Holdings Ltd    

The winners in the various categories were as follows.

Overall winner 
Barclays Africa Group Ltd
Top 40
Standard Bank Group Ltd
Mid Cap
Life Healthcare Group Holdings Ltd
Small Cap
Hulamin Ltd
Fledgling / AltX
York Timbers Holdings Ltd
Large State-owned Company
Transnet SOC Ltd
Small State-owned Company
Development Bank Southern Africa Ltd
Public Sector
Fasset
Regional Company
Swaziland Sugar Association
Non-listed Company
Strate (Pty) Ltd
NPO/NGO
Cotlands

Important dates in 2016

Registrations open 5 January
Annual registration and Examination enrolment 31 March

Exemptions

31 March

Postponements (before examinations)

22 April
(Open from 1 April to 22 April)

Exams begin

16 May

Students

Enrol with CSSA in 2016!


We know that you don’t have to be a Chartered Secretary to work in governance, finance, law or run your own company. But, we firmly believe that becoming a Chartered Secretary represents a sound achievement and opens doors for a variety of career opportunities.

  • You’ll stand out from the competition – those with professional qualifications instantly stand out to prospective employers.
  • It gives instant recognition of your professional and academic achievement – being Chartered shows that you have reached a level of academic achievement and professional experience.
  • The qualification is recognised in 77 countries around the globe and CSSA members in good standing are welcome in these countries should they decide to emigrate.
  • There is currently a shortage of qualified and experienced Chartered Secretaries, with demand on the increase in light of the new Companies Act and the King code. This means that Chartered Secretaries can command competitive remuneration packages.
  • If you are studying or starting out in your career, belonging to a professional body will give you a good head start and support structure.
  • The benefits of belonging to a professional organisation can enhance your professional life and can far outweigh the disadvantages of an annual fee.
  • It is a recognised qualification for company secretaries and accountants.
  • CSSA is: a registered professional body with SAQA; a recognised controlling body for tax practitioners; an accredited quality assurance partner with Fasset and is represented on the King committee.

What are the current tangible benefits of membership?

  • Weekly emails - you’ll continuously be updated with the latest thinking in the profession
  • Ezine – a quarterly newsletter sent by email
  • Boardroom – a quarterly publication sent by post
  • Discounts on conferences and CPD seminars
  • A guarantee to employers regarding the member’s character, integrity and accountability
  • Adherence to a code of ethics and conduct
  • Up-to-date technical support
  • Networking opportunities
  • Access to the Institute’s appointments register which is being relaunched in 2016
  • We are working on improving the benefits members receive in 2016!

This is the third edition of the Chartered Secretaries Southern Africa eZine 2015. Should you have any suggestions or specific information you would like included in future editions, please revert to the membership and marketing department, membership@chartsec.co.za.