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Advocate Vusi Pikoli reflects on ethical leadership at UJ

“South Africans need to respect the country’s constitution,” these were the words of former head of the National Prosecuting Authority, Advocate Vusi Pikoli, when he presented a public lecture at the University of Johannesburg (UJ) on Monday, 21 July
Reflecting on ethical leadership, the gains South Africa made, and the constraints and challenges the country is currently facing, Advocate Vusi Pikoli encouraged the audience to become active citizens in an effort to promote good ethical leadership. He went on to acknowledge citizens’ role in helping the country resolve these problems. Says Advocate Pikoli: “I honestly wish that all of us could carry the South African Constitution book wherever we go. It is a book which lays down who we are and what our aspirations are as a nation. We strive for quality, human dignity, regular elections and accountability. The constitution is our guide to achieve this.”
He added that in modern democracy, citizens are able, but do not always hold those they have entrusted with public power accountable. He urged the public to have inquisitive minds. “The public should probe what it is that hinders the country from prospering. We need to instill ethical leadership in everyone – from an early stage in life. This will motivate people to strive to be good leaders and not to tolerate incidences such as the miss-management of the countries’ resources,” said Advocate Pikoli.​
The lecture also served as a platform for the launch of Advocate Pikoli’s new book entitled My Second Initiation. In the book, co-written with award-winning journalist Mandy Wiener, he recounts how he fled with his ANC unit, spending 14 years in exile, only to face the difficult and odious task of prosecuting friends and comrades on his return.
The public lecture, entitled Ethical Leadership: Strengthening Democracy, was hosted by the University’s SARCHI Chair: African Diplomacy and Foreign Policy, in partnership with the Faculty of Law and the Library and Information Centre.


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