MUT honouree and KZN Surveyor-General reminds graduates to act with integrity

Surveyor-General of the KwaZulu-Natal Province, Nondwe Monyake
Surveyor-General of the KwaZulu-Natal Province, Ms Nondwe Monyake

Mangosuthu University of Technology (MUT) honorary fellowship recipient has reminded graduates to act with integrity in their respective careers to set an example for younger people who see them as their beacon of hope.

Speaking at the first MUT 2019 graduation ceremony on Tuesday (9 April 2019), Surveyor-General of the KwaZulu-Natal Province, Nondwe Monyake, told graduates that integrity meant acting ethically and doing the right thing at all times.

“Integrity is about doing the right thing even when it’s not acknowledged by others, or convenient for you,” she said. “Building the reputation of integrity takes years but it takes a second to lose it.”

This is followed by respect for time as a virtue, an important practice especially for graduates who are about to enter the world of work where they are expected to be on time.

“Be always on time for meetings. This is a clear sign of respect, not only for the people you are meeting but for yourself,” said Monyake. “Being on time shows that you are dependable and trustworthy and makes one earn people’s respect.”

However, integrity stretches further to the character of individuals and how they should carry themselves.

“People with integrity are humble, they have a strong sense of self, they have high self-esteem, and they are self-confident. These characteristics are important because sometimes, you, as young people, will be under intense pressure from your peers to make the wrong choices and decisions,” said Monyake. “Learn to be assertive so that you can defend an ethical position and not succumb to peer pressure.”

Signs of integrity are often mundane activities that are taken lightly and treated as not being important although they say a lot about the individual.

“When you replace printer paper after finishing the paper for the next person not to be inconvenienced. When you sign the correct arrival time in the work register rather than the time you are contracted to arrive at and working that time you owe your employer by working overtime,” said Monyake. “When you allow the security guard to search your bag and make you sign the register even though you are the boss in your company; he is just doing his job. When you submit your leave form without having to be reminded to do so.”

Her message comes at an important time in South Africa where the country is witnessing a leadership vacuum characterised by business and political leaders being hauled to courts and commissions of inquiry over allegations of corruption, unethical practices and lack of integrity.

Monyake dedicate her MUT honorary fellowship to the Chief Surveyor-General, Mmuso Riba, whose dedication to transformation has shaped the relationship between MUT, other universities and the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform.

“In 1994 there was no black woman Professional Land Surveyor in our country,” said Monyake. “But 25 years later, through Mr Riba’s vast contribution, this country has got 41 members that are registered with the South African Geomatics Council.”

Getting an MUT honorary fellowship was a sentimental moment for Monyake because of her father’s friendship with Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, MUT’s founding father.

“What is humbling the most for me is the fact that this University was founded by one of our own, Nkosi Mangosuthu Buthelezi. The good Prince, not only was he my father’s good friend, Nkosi Kaiser Daliwonga Matanzima, but is also a close family friend,” said Monyake.  “I truly admire the legacy he left behind for the future generations to enjoy. My father would have been very proud to witness this day, particularly at this university.”