Walter Sisulu University's HOD voted one of country's finest young accountants


WSU accounting department head Francis Kwahene’s enduring efforts to regain accreditation for the University’s BCom Accounting programme have gained deserved recognition from the country’s leading accountancy journal.

Kwahene is comfortably nestled in the company of some of South Africa’s leading young chartered accountants as one of this year’s finalists in Accountancy SA’s Top 35-under-35 competition.

“Wow, words can’t describe how much of an honour it is to be given this accolade and to be nominated as one of the finalists. I am excited and humbled at the same time. This recognition is testament to the hard work and dedication of the department,” says Kwahene.

Key to making the cut in the prestigious competition is a concerted effort and critical role in leadership, career achievements and corporate social investment initiatives – criterion thousands of entrants fell short adequately meeting.

Kwahene’s incredible efforts as HOD in championing the WSU/SAICA Reaccreditation Programme have catapulted the initiative to one of the University’s flagship programmes – achieving incredible feats since its commencement in 2012.

“We have made very good progress since the commencement of the project. We have managed to address many of the apparent gaps like staffing quality and shortages, curriculum development, assessments and student support that were identified when benchmarking our old qualification with that of accredited institutions,” he says.

WSU faculty of administration and commerce dean Dr Sookdhev Rajkaran said Kwahene’s efforts were a good indication of the calibre of work that was being done at the department.

He also highlighted the great significance such achievements have in creating a hunger for success amongst his counterparts and the students.

“I have found Mr Kwahene to be an exceptional leader. He has the charisma to lead his subordinates and the department to new heights and especially for the SAICA reaccreditation drive,” adds Rajkaran.

Deputy HOD Dumisani Mrwetyana showered praise upon his counterpart – citing his achievement of enlisting and retaining young CAs to lecture in Mthatha as one of his great achievements.

“He ensured that the university sources the required quality of academics to carry out his mandate thus improving the quality of the offering in the department through his belief in delivering against all odds,” says Mrwetyana.

Since Kwahene’s appointment as HOD in 2012, the SAICA reaccreditation programme has attracted an average of about 120 learners to the programme – all the while maintaining a 90% aggregate across all three levels since the its commencement.

“I have always believed that education is the only sustainable way to change a person’s trajectory in life. By doing what we are doing here at WSU we are providing an opportunity for previously disadvantaged students to achieve their dreams and in doing so lifting their families above the poverty line,” says Kwahene.

His dogged determination over the past four years could soon bear the desired fruits – fulfilling his mandate.

“We have a preliminary visit in November 2014 from the accreditors. Based on the progress made thus far, it’s been decided that we will apply for accreditation in June 2015. We are silently confident that this application will be successful.