The South African National Roads Agency (SOC) Limited (SANRAL) was the talk of the town at The South Africa Institute of Civil Engineering (SAICE) Transport Division’s awards recently.
These awards are a way of celebrating excellence in the transport engineering world. SANRAL was in more ways than one a prominent feature of the awards.
In his opening remarks, SAICE’s Transport Division Chairman, Robin Chetty said, “SANRAL plays an important role in the value chain of Transport Engineering, its role in enabling infrastructure development in the sector is pivotal in ensuring a sector that thrives and ensures that standards are held up and quality is continually improved”.
The President of SAICE, Sundran Naicker further underscored the immense importance that SANRAL plays in firstly, careers of Transport Engineers and generally in the civil works spheres as these relate to road works.
SANRAL CEO Skhumbuzo Macozoma gave the key note address. The emphasis of his address was on growing SANRAL to be a 30 billion plus concern by 2030.
He said: “Central to this would be to attract, nurture and continually invest in human capital, research and development and transformation of the sector by ensuring vigorous and meaningful participation by SMME’s. Further to that, would be commercialising SANRAL’s expertise gained throughout the years and expanding its footprint in the continent and beyond.”
Highest honour of the day
Jacobus Johannes “Koos” Smit, Operations Executive at SANRAL received what was arguably the highest honour for the day, the Chairman’s Award.
The Chairman read a citation written by former SANRAL CEO Nazir Ali, which stated: “A life dedicated to excellence, diligence and service”.
Prior to his receiving of the award, speaker after speaker spoke glowingly of “Oom” Koos’ dedication and contribution to the field of engineering. Many were surprised that Koos resigned from the Department of Transport to join a yet to be incorporated SOC, SANRAL, this meant he had no position, salary and certainty. Koos is a beacon in the sector and was thus fittingly celebrated.
The awards attracted more than 250 attendees, quite a remarkable feat for a midweek midday event. This was testament to the importance these awards are to the sector and how peer recognition is a morale booster to these professionals.