The Council governs the university and is constituted according to the provision of the Higher Education Act, 1997, and the University of Cape Town Statute.

Its responsibilities include determining the mission, objectives, goals, strategies and policies for the progress of the institution. It must also ensure an environment conducive to efficient, effective, economical and ethical attainment of these goals.

It has the responsibility of maintaining and ensuring a financially secure, healthy and viable environment and accounting for all decisions taken at UCT, including the submission of the required reports and documents to the Minister of Education.

Ultimate accountability

The Council of an institution, its Senate and vice-chancellor through the Council, are accountable for their actions to the State through the Minister of Education.


The 30-member Council consists of:

  • executive officers
  • other employees of the institution
  • students 
  • persons, who are not staff or students, appointed by a wide range of parties.

Staff and students of the institution must make up at least 60% of the total membership.

Members of Council

The Council membership for the period 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2020 is recorded below. The term of appointment is 4 years unless stated otherwise.

70% of the Council members are black (43% previously) and 40% are women (37% previously).

Ex Officio (4) 1. Prof M Phakeng (Vice-Chancellor)
2. Prof L Feris (Deputy Vice-Chancellor)
3. A/Prof L Lange (Deputy Vice-Chancellor)
4. Prof M Kyobe (Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor)
Ministerial appointees (3) 5. Ms S Barsel
6. Ms R Omar
7. Mr S Pityana (Chairperson)
Members elected by Convocation (6) 8. Mr N Arendse SC
9. Ms DJ Budlender (Deputy Chairperson)
10. Dr S Manjra
11. Prof S Zinn
12. Vacant
13. Vacant
Academic and professional administrative and support staff (PASS) elected members (2) 14. Mr E Balarin (PASS)
15. Prof E Ramugondo (Academic)
Members elected by Senate (4) 16. Prof M Madiba
17. Prof T Moultrie
18. Mr JA Rousseau
19. Vacant
Members elected by donors (2) 20. Mr E Davids
21. Ms D Yach
Nominee of Cape Town City Council (1) 22. Cllr M Kleinschmidt
Nominee of the Premier of the Western Cape (1) 23. Dr M Cardo MP
Appointed by the Appointments Committee of Council (5) 24. Mr A Jakoet
25. Ms T Mokgabudi
26. Ms B Ngonyama
27. Mr B Zwane
28. Vacant
Appointed by the SRC (2) 29. Ms Asanda Lobelo
30. Vacant  

Information supplied by:
Marius Lund
Office of the Registrar
Tel: +27 (0)21 650 4004

Information updated by:
Dee Benjamin
Tel: +27 (0)21 650 2187

Updated: 29 November 2018