04 December 2019

Civil engineering industry body the
South African Institution of Civil Engineering (SAICE) today inaugurated Mopilwane
Fana Marutla as its 117th president at La Toscana, Montecasino.

Marutla is a civil engineer with 22
years’ experience, specialising in railway engineering, infrastructure design and
maintenance, project management and business case development. He is Head
of Business Development, Transportation at GIBB Engineering & Architecture,
and previously worked for 17 years at Transnet Freight Rail. 

Marutla was chairperson of SAICE’s
Railway & Harbour Division from 2016-17. He is an advisory board member in
the Department of Civil Engineering (Technology) at the University of
Johannesburg, an advisory board member in the Department of Civil Engineering
at the University of Pretoria, a board member of the South African Heavy Haul
Association, and a committee member of rural-development initiative the Thabampshe
Development Forum.

He has lectured in Railway Engineering
at the University of Pretoria since 2010.

In his
inauguration speech, Marutla emphasised the role of ethical leadership in
improving South African education, youth entrepreneurship and procurement.

proposed addressing unemployment, poor education and underrepresentation of
women in STEM fields by investing heavily in youth entrepreneurship
initiatives. He also spoke of the need to boost the numbers of maths and science
teachers and lecturers at academic institutions.

also called for renewed commitment to the goals and vision of the National
Development Plan (NDP).

working economy is built upon quality education, infrastructure investment,
production of exportable goods and the good health of the working class,” said

echoed finance minister Tito Mboweni’s pronouncements in a recent discussion
document that network industries such as energy, transport, water and
telecommunications underpin economic growth, productivity, and competitiveness.

network industries face challenges of poor maintenance and delayed capital
investment to support economic development,” he said. “But many professionals
in the STEM environment have already raised their hands and are simply waiting
for government to provide policy certainty to drive this developmental agenda.
Our country’s huge potential is heavily under-utilised.”

said corruption was a well-known impediment to infrastructure development.

and unethical procurement rob the country of the economic and social
infrastructure we need for our people,” he said.

He also
lamented the lack of compliance to procurement norms and regulations in South
Africa’s business culture.

to political leaders has become a new criterion for where contracts are
awarded. This unfortunately not only compromises project quality, but also return
on investments, which then become significantly reduced,” he said.

called for a return to ethical leadership.

“As we align our institutions with modern
technological developments, we should do so based on ethical models of
leadership. We need a nation that abides by its laws,” he said.

information from Nadeena le Tang, Tel: 011 805
5947 / Email: [email protected]

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