Our Supervisory Board

Ms Thoko Mpumlwana

Chair of the Supervisory Board

Ms Mpulwana is a former anti-apartheid activist and expert in teacher education and gender and women’s rights, and currently serves as Chair of the Supervisory Board of the Foundation for Human Rights. In the past, she served as a Commissioner and a Deputy Chairperson for the South African Commission for Gender Equality. Ms Mpumlwana is one of the original Commissioners of the Independent Electoral Commission, established in 1997, and has chaired the South African Council of Churches Women’s Working Group. She has sat on numerous boards including the boards of the Independent Development Trust (IDT), Womens’ Development Foundation (WDF), South African Women in Dialogue (SAWD), The Film and Publication Board (FPB), and the Council of the University of Pretoria. She has been active in publishing as both author and editor.

Judge Sirajudien Desai

Deputy Chair of the Supervisory Board

Judge Desai is an advocate and judge at the Western Cape High Court. He was appointed as a judge on the Cape Supreme Court bench in 1995. In July 1995 he was elevated to the bench of the Western Cape High Court (then the Cape Supreme Court, later the Cape High Court). Judge Desai has served as chairperson of the National Council for Correctional Services (NCCS) since 1998.

Judge Narandran Jody Kollapen

Treasurer of the Supervisory Board

Judge Kollapen has been a judge of the High Court of South Africa, Gauteng Division, Pretoria, since 2011, and is also the Chairperson of the South African Law Reform Commission. While practising as an attorney, Judge Kollapen coordinated the Release of Political Prisoners programme at Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR). He was also a member of the selection panel that chose the Commissioners for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Prior to his appointment as a judge, he served as the Chairperson of the South African Human Rights Commission. Judge Kollapen has sat on the boards of several public interest litigation organizations, including the Legal Resources Centre, the Centre for the Study of Violence and Reconciliation and the Institute for Democracy in South Africa.

Dr Pali Lehohla

Member of the Supervisory Board

Dr Pali Lehohla has over thirty-five years’ experience in statistics and is the former Statistician-General in South Africa and Head of Statistics South Africa (2000-2017). Dr Lehohla currently sits on the UN Secretary General’s Independent Advisory Panel for the health of mothers, children and adolescents. He also served as the Chair of PARIS 21 which advanced advocacy for use of statistics, and as Chair of the United Nations Statistics Commission. He was the founding chair of the Statistics Commission of Africa (StatCom Africa) and chaired the African Symposium for Statistical Development (ASSD) up until his retirement in 2017. Dr Lehohla was one of a 25 person team of an Independent Expert Advisory Group advising United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon on the Data Revolution.

Advocate Dumisa Ntsebeza (SC)

Member of the Supervisory Board

Adv. Ntsebeza is a Senior Counsel, admitted to the Cape Town Bar, and Acting Judge of the High Court of South Africa. He became the first African to be conferred silk status in the history of the Cape Bar. Due to his involvement in political activism in the 1970’s, Adv. Ntsebeza was imprisoned, during which time he completed his law degree. He served as a Commissioner with the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). He is a founder of the South African National Association of Democratic Lawyers (NADEL) and the Black Lawyers Association (BLA), and served as their President. Adv. Ntsebeza is a member of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC), where he has acted as the Commission’s spokesperson. He is national chairman of the Council of Advocates for Transformation. Adv. Ntsebeza has also held a number of academic positions. He is currently visiting professor of Political Science and Law at the University of Connecticut in the US, and in 2017 was made a Chancellor of the University of Fort Hare.

Prof Errol Holland

Member of the Supervisory Board

Prof Errol Holland is a haematologist and political activist. Prof Holland served as Dean of the School of Medicine at the University of Witwatersrand and then as Executive Dean of Health Sciences at the University of Limpopo. He qualified as a medical doctor from the University of Cape Town in 1972, and as a specialist in internal medicine. He earned a PhD and registration in the sub-specialty of clinical haematology.

Judge Ntlupheko James Yekiso

Member of the Supervisory Board

Judge Yekiso is the first black lawyer to have set up a legal practice in Cape Town, where he founded the firm NJ Yekiso and Associates. In 2002, he was appointed a permanent Judge of the Cape High Court, from which he retired. From 2007 to 2009 he served as an Acting Inspecting Judge of Prisons. In 2018, Judge Yekiso was made Chair of the commission established at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology to investigate the allegations of maladministration and poor service delivery which led to violent student protests between 2014 and 2017.

Ms Shirley Mabusela

Member of the Supervisory Board

Ms Mabusela is a specialist in the area of children’s rights and works as a consultant in this field. In the past, she was CEO of the Children’s Foundation and the National CEO of the National Children’s Rights Committee, where she managed the process that saw children’s rights included in the South African Constitution. She also served as Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC). She is a trustee of the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund and is a member of the Council of the University of Venda. She is a qualified social worker.

Dr Sithembile Mbete

Member of the Supervisory Board

Dr Mbete is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Political Sciences at the University of Pretoria, where she lectures international relations and South African politics. She is also an Associate Fellow of the Centre for Governance Innovation at the University of Pretoria. Prior to this, Dr Mbete worked for the Presidency of South Africa, where she was a researcher in the secretariat of the National Planning Commission. She also worked as a political researcher at the Institute for Democracy in Africa (IDASA), where she was responsible for parliamentary monitoring and political analysis.

Ms Zibusiso Kganyago

Member of the Supervisory Board

Ms Kganyago is an accountant and a Director of Development at Tsogo Sun. Prior to this, she worked as an accountant at COSATU. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Natal. She has also attended the Business Development Programme at the Wharton School of Business in Pennsylvania, as well as the Executive Development Program at the University of Nevada in Reno.

Mr Zukile Nomvete

Member of the Supervisory Board

Mr Nomvete is currently the Chairman of the Board of the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) which is a State-Owned Enterprise, as well as of Hermes Apollo Precision Engineering. Since 1979 he has worked in the aviation industry in various capacities, and has on two occasions served on the Board of the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SAACA). As a Director at the Airports Company Limited (ACL) he assisted in laying the foundations for the establishment of the present-day Airports Company of South Africa (ACSA). He also served as country representative at the Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP) of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

Mr Hanif Vally

Ex Officio Member of the Supervisory Board

Mr Vally is the Executive Director of the Foundation for Human Rights. He is also an acting Judge of the High Court of South Africa. Prior to joining FHR in 2008, he worked as Head of the Human Rights Unit at the Commonwealth Secretariat in London. He previously served as the National Legal Officer at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa. He served as the Pretoria regional director of the Legal Resources Centre and acted as defense attorney in several high profile human rights cases during the apartheid era. Mr Vally is a former student activist who spent nine months in detention for his political activism.

MS Louise Asmal

Honorary Member of the Supervisory Board

Ms Asmal has worked in human rights organizations all her life, from the National Council for Civil Liberties (now Liberty) in London, to the Irish Anti-Apartheid Movement, of which she was honorary secretary for 25 years, to the South African Legal Defence Fund and the Canon Collins Educational Trust. She served as chairperson of the board of the Foundation for Human Rights for over 10 years, until the end of 2014, and remains an honorary board member.