SA's cash-strapped universities pay bosses multimillion-rand salaries

11 November 2018 - 00:26 By PREGA GOVENDER
Students walking outside the Great Hall, Wits University. File photo.
Students walking outside the Great Hall, Wits University. File photo.
Image: Sihle Maku

Cash-strapped universities have cut spending, but the executives who run them are pocketing multimillion-rand salaries.

Of SA’s 26 universities, 19 have disclosed the 2017 annual salaries of their vice-chancellors. They range from R2.5m to R4.5m.Stellenbosch University vice-chancellor Wim de Villiers tops the list. His R4.5m included a R30,000 bonus.

Close behind was former University of Venda head Peter Mbati, who pocketed R4.2m. Former University of Johannesburg vice-chancellor Ihron Rensburg received R17.6m last year, the final year of his 10-year tenure. Of this, R13.7m was in retention incentives accumulated over the 10 years — which works out to an average annual incentive of R1.3m.

The salaries and perks paid out to some vice-chancellors — the academic world’s equivalent of CEOs — have sparked calls for the department of higher education to investigate.

One vice-chancellor, who asked not to be identified, acknowledged some of his peers were receiving exorbitant salaries and perks.

“There should be a uniform salary structure for all vice-chancellors,” he said, describing Rensburg’s R17.6m payout as “ridiculous”.

Full story in the Sunday Times

subscribe

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.