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South Africa must recapture universities from unethical councils

Replacing one with another isn’t enough. Rigorous criteria that insist on unquestionable track records are needed

You’ve heard of state capture? Welcome to a new term making the rounds in Mzansi, institutional capture. It’s what happens when public and private interests collude to commandeer university resources for corrupt ends. In a study of dysfunction in 12 South African universities over 25 years, I have found a disturbing pattern of corruption that causes and benefits from chronic instabilities in those institutions. The provisional title of the forthcoming book is Bewitched?, a reference to a recent headline in a Sunday newspaper that asked: “Is the Vaal University of Technology an institution bewitched?”..

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