Agri Western Cape Annual Congress 2018: Speakers

Judith February


Agriculture amidst socio-political uncertainty

Judith February is a lawyer, governance specialist and columnist. She is a Senior Research Associate at the Institute for Security Studies and a Visiting Fellow at the Wits School of Governance. She was the executive director of the HSRC’s Democracy and Governance unit and head of the Idasa’s South African Governance programme for nine years.

She obtained her BA (Law and Latin) and LlB degrees at the University of Cape Town and was admitted as an attorney in 1996. She practised law until 2000 when she obtained her LlM in Commercial Law.

Judith has worked extensively on issues of good governance, transparency and accountability within the South African context. Her areas of focus include corruption and its impact on governance, Parliamentary oversight and institutional design.

In 2009 she served on an ad hoc panel to evaluate the effectiveness of South Africa’s Parliament. She was also awarded a summer fellowship at the Freeman Spogli Institute for Democracy Development and the Rule of Law at Stanford University, California in 2009.

Judith is the co-editor of ‘Testing democracy: which way is South Africa going?’. She has taught a course on Contemporary South African politics at the University of Cape Town and is an independent, non-executive director of Coronation Fund Managers. In 2012, she was awarded a Spring Reagan-Fascell Fellowship at the National Endowment for Democracy in Washington DC where she was based until 2012.

Her book, ‘Turning and turning: exploring the complexities of South Africa’s democracy will be released in August 2018.

Prof Mike Muller


Natural Resources: Sustainable Or Adverse Effect On Agriculture

Prof Mike Muller is a professional engineer and Visiting Adjunct Professor at the Witwatersrand University School of Governance. He was a Commissioner of South Africa’s National Planning Commission, chair of the World Economic Forum’s Agenda Council on Water, member of the Global Water Partnership’s Technical Committee and the UN Millennium Project Task Force on Water and Sanitation.

As Director General of South Africa’s Department of Water Affairs and Forestry (1997 – 2005), Prof Muller led the development of new policies, legislation and programmes in water resources and services that provided safe water to over ten million people. In the National Planning Commission, he focused on economic infrastructure, the environment/climate/energy nexus and regional development and integration.

Prof Muller co-chaired water-sharing negotiations with Mozambique and Swaziland, led the South African side in the on-going Lesotho Highlands Water Project and guided a range of major domestic projects. From 1979 to 1988, he worked for the Mozambican government managing WS&S programmes and utilities, coordinating a large number of separate donor-funded projects as well as an innovative urban sanitation programme.

Prof Muller has explained that Cape Town’s recent water crisis was actually caused by confused environmentalists who thought they lived in Europe. He still receives invitations from Cape Town, not least because one of his last achievements in government was start the construction of the Berg River dam, which saved the city from Day Zero.

Prof Jannie Rossouw


Managing Agriculture In An Environment Of Policy Uncertainty

Prof Jannie Rossouw was born in Stellenbosch and matriculated at the Menlo Park High School in Pretoria. He obtained an M.Com (Economics) degree and an MBA degree at the University of Pretoria and completed his PhD at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

Prof Rossouw is the Head of the School of Economic and Business Sciences at the University of the Witwatersrand. He joined Wits on 1 February 2016 after his retirement as a Deputy General Manager of the South African Reserve Bank (Head: Currency Management).

His publications include a book on the SA Reserve Bank, a number of book chapters and more than 30 papers in accredited academic journals. His areas of research are inflation perceptions and inflation credibility, ownership structures of central banks with private shareholders and fiscal sustainability in South Africa.

In 2014 he published a research paper on South Africa’s looming fiscal cliff and this matter has since attracted considerable attention in South Africa. Prof Rossouw established himself as a political economist and regularly comments in the media on economic and political developments in South Africa.

He is a member of the SA Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns and serves on its Audit and Risk Management Committee. He also chairs the Audit Committee of the Afrikaans Language Museum and Monument in Paarl and serves as an alternate member of the Gauteng Consumer Affairs Court. He is Vice-President of the Economic Society of South Africa.

Dr Theo de Jager


Hoe word eiendomsreg in ander lande bestuur?

Dr Theo de Jager, President van die World Farmers Organisation (WFO) en eerste Suid-Afrikaner om aan die hoof van dié organisasie te staan, het sy doktorsgraad in Filosofie in 1988 aan die Universiteit van Pretoria behaal. Sy navorsing het op outentieke Afrika-filosofie gefokus. Hy het sy BA-graad in Politieke Wetenskap in 1984 aan die Universiteit van Stellenbosch behaal.

Tussen 1992 – 1997 het dr De Jager as ‘n onderhandelings- en konflikbestuurskonsultant vir talle maatskappye soos Gencor (nou BHP Billiton), Denel, Nuclear Energy Corporation, Singer en Krygkor opgetree. Hy het al meer as 295 artikels oor grondsake, landbou, klimaatsverandering en landbou-belegging in Afrika in tydskrifte gepubliseer.

Dr De Jager boer sedert 1997 in die Laeveld met onder meer sub-tropiese vrugte soos avokado’s, mango’s en makadamia-neute. Hy is ‘n voormalige adjunkpresident van Agri SA, waar hy sedert 2008 vir grondhervorming, transformasie, landbouer-ontwikkeling en Afrika-skakeling verantwoordelik was.

Hy is tans ook die President van die die Suider-Afrikaanse Konfederasie van Landbou-unies (SACAU) en is ‘n voormalige president van die Pan African Farmers Organization, die top-organisasie vir georganiseerde landbou in Afrika.

Dr De Jager is ‘n stigterslid en huidige voorsitter van Agri All Africa – ‘n oplossingsgebaseerde maatskappy wat as ‘n platform dien om relevante komponente in die landbou-waardeketting vir suksesvolle kommersiële boerderypraktyke in Afrika te integreer. Hy is ‘n filosoof en digter met ‘n onwrikbare geloof in Afrika en sy mense, en ‘n gretige natuurstudent.