Brand South Africa will bring an opportunity to discuss education with specialists in the field, to the community in Soweto when it hosts the second Play Your Part/Sowetan dialogue in Soweto, Orlando West, Uncle Toms Hall on 22 January.Education plays a significant role in growing a country and in its competitiveness, says Brand South Africa CEO Miller MatolaThe dialogue will focus on the topic, “Why many learners and students start but don’t finish?” and is in line with the awareness that learners must stay in school to receive quality education.The discussion will be guided by:Adam Habib – Vice Chancellor at Wits UniversityVuyo Jack – CEO and founder of EmpowerdexPanyaza Lesufi – National Department of Basic EducationRosie Chirongoma – (PfP) Fundraising and Stakeholder Engagement at SymphoniaDr Jeffrey Mabelebele – Higher Education South AfricaBrand South Africa CEO Miller Matola said, “Education plays a significant role in growing a country and in its competitiveness. We therefore need to ensure our school system can deliver quality education to enrich our learners and provide them with the tools they need to be successful.”“I invite all those interested in ensuring our education system is able to deliver the kind of education that supports the intellectual growth and development of our young people to play their part and attend the dialogue,” concluded Mr Matola.Sowetan Dialogues are public conversations held in local communities across the country. They provide a platform for discussions on issues that affect societies and what we can collectively do to improve these conditions.Media are invited to attend as follows:Date : Wednesday, 22 January 2013Venue : Soweto, Orlando West, Uncle Toms HallTime : 18h00 for 18:30RSVP : Fikile MakhobaEmail: [email protected] Mobile: 082 404 4856The entrance to the dialogue is free although places must be booked. To book please SMS keyword DIALOGUES, name and surname to 41936. SMSes are charged at R1.50/SMS. Free minutes do not apply. Booking line closes on 21st January 2014. Confirmation will be sent via SMS or RSVP to [email protected] of the panelistsProfessor Adam HabibProfessor Adam Habib is the Vice-Chancellor and Principal of the University of the Witwatersrand, and has served in this position as from the 1st of June 2013. He is an academic, an activist, an administrator, and a renowned political media commentator and columnist. A Professor of Political Science, Habib has more than 30 years of academic, research, institutional and administration expertise. His experience spans five universities and multiple local and international institutions, boards and task teams. His professional involvement in institutions has always been defined by three distinct engagements: the contest of ideas; their translation into actionable initiatives; and the building of institutions.Panyaza LesufiMr Panyaza Lesufi is a spokesman for the Department of Basic Education. He was born in Tembisa where he led a number of youth and student structures before getting arrested under the 1988 Apartheid Emergency Regulation for belonging to then banned organizations (ANC, MK and COSAS). Mr Lesufi matriculated at Vital Link Student Cooperation and went on to study Business Administration at the University of Natal in Durban where he was voted President of the SRC. He served in the Senate, Council and EXCO of the University and was awarded the Best SRC President ever by the University Natal as well as the Albert Luthuli Inter-Personal Relations Award. He served as Deputy Regional Secretary of the ANC at Ekurhuleni for 10 years before being elected to the Provincial Executive Committee (PEC) of the ANC Gauteng Province. Mr Lesufi also served as a board member of the Ellis Park Disaster Fund and Chairperson of the Matthew Goniwe School of Leadership.Rosie ChirongomaMs Rosie Chirongoma deals with Fundraising and Stakeholder Engagement at Symphonia. Ms Chirongoma’s interests include current affairs, creating awareness about the issues that affect African children and working with children in disadvantaged communities. Armed with a National Diploma in Architectural Technology, she lists strong leadership, good communication skills, being passionate and driven as well as willingness to take risks as her strengths. Ms Chirongoma has been actively involved in affecting change at a grassroots level in South Africa since 2007. Her list of community projects include: Big Brother Big Sister; the Paballo Ya Batho project which helps provide food, medical care and companionship to 500 destitute and homeless people living in the inner city of Johannesburg. In 2010, Ms Chirongoma spent her weekends looking after abandoned children at the TLC Children’s Home. She was recognised as a Nedbank Local Hero, in 2007, for providing 450 learners at New Generation School with learning resources and an environment conducive for learning in an informal settlement.Vuyo JackVuyo Jack grew up in Dube, Soweto where he entertained the idea of becoming a film director, before a family friend in merchant banking changed his mind. He then decided to study accounting which he sees as a critical basis for informed economic decision-making, and as a central measure of business performance. Since co-founding Empowerdex, Vuyo was appointed as a member of the dti’s BEE Task Team in 2003 and has advised both government departments and various corporates on matters of BEE. Vuyo has a weekly column in Sunday’s Business Report on issues surrounding BEE. In addition to his role as Executive Chairman of Empowerdex, Vuyo lectures Financial Accounting at Wits on a part-time basis.Dr Jeffrey MabelebeleDr Jeffrey Mabelebele joined Higher Education South Africa (HESA) in 2009 as a Director, Operations and Sector Support. Prior to this, he worked for the Human Sciences Research Council as a Researcher, Government Communication and Information System as a Director in the Project Office and the National Treasury’s Technical Assistance Unit as Director, Knowledge Management. His research interests include social values, identity and memory. Dr Mabelebele studied at the universities of Limpopo and UNISA. His work is published widely in accredited and peer reviewed journals.