The South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) has welcomed the appointment of Professor Zeblon Vilakazi as the next vice-chancellor of the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) from January 1, 2021.
Vilakazi is currently the deputy vice-chancellor of research and postgraduate affairs at Wits. He will succeed Professor Adam Habib who resigned in February and will continue to serve in the post until the end of December.
Vilakazi, who is a nuclear physicist, had previously served as Necsa group executive for research and development, and also contributed to the development of nuclear technology applications while employed at nuclear and particle accelerator radioisotope laboratory iThemba Labs in South Africa.
“Let me congratulate Professor Vilakazi on behalf of Necsa and the nuclear industry. It is not often that we receive such newspaper headlines announcing a nuclear physicist appointed to head an institution like Wits University, which is amongst the leading institutions in South Africa and globally," said Necsa chairperson David Nicholls.
He added that Vilakazi's latest appointment was good news for the nuclear industry as any future nuclear new build programme would depend on cooperation with institutions of higher learning in research and development.