During the July 2019 Council meeting, two City of Tshwane officials received awards, as follows:
The first recipient of an award is Dr Johan Kok.
Dr Johan Kok began his local government career in the former City Council of Pretoria where he joined the Marketing Directorate and later assisted in the establishment of Client Services, which dealt with resolving complaints. As the Director of City Planning, he later became involved in establishing a specialised and dedicated enforcement unit in that department.
Dr Kok was co-opted to assist in the establishment of the Tshwane Metro Police and subsequently became Director of Licencing Services, the position in which most employees and councillors know him, even as it moved between various departments over the years.
Dr Kok maintained an academic affiliation with the TMPD, and, in addition to his contribution to the City over the years, he has also made significant academic contributions to the field of mathematics, specifically graph theory and proving what he calls "Lucky's Theorem", which is named after the late Lucky Mahlalela, a "self-appointed points man" who was well known to many Tshwane residents before he was allegedly murdered in 2018.
A research project on tattooing graphs by Dr Kok and Prof Naduvath Sudev of the Vidya Academy of Science and Technology in India showed an interesting family of graphs that reminded Dr Kok of rugby balls. After careful consideration – and with the permission of Pieter van der Westhuizen – the family of graphs were named the J9 graphs after the late Joost van der Westhuizen, a rugby legend in Tshwane and in South Africa.
Dr Kok has published numerous other research papers and is now co-authoring his 98th research paper in Discrete Mathematics and Applications.
The second recipient of an award is firefighter Lindsay Mnguni
Mr Lindsay Z Mnguni began working as a firefighter recruit in the Benoni Fire and Emergency Services in 2000. After that, he worked at Volkswagen as a firefighter in Port Elizabeth, and in July 2001 he joined the City of Tshwane Fire Brigade. In 2006 he was promoted to Company Commander and worked at Centurion Fire Station.
Mr Mnguni is still based at Centurion Fire Station, where he has also acted as District Commander in Centurion and later in the Central and then the Specialist Task Force, between 2009 and 2015. He also served as acting Deputy Director of the Rapid Response Unit between 2015 and 2016. Mr Mnguni has taken part in international rescue missions as an urban search and rescue technician.
Mr Mnguni is married and has three children and a grandchild. Together with his wife they adopted a fourth child whom they raised as their own, who has grown up to be a young adult of 21. The family's Christian faith forms an important part of their lives.
Mr Mnguni has transformed his passion, dedication and commitment to his role as a firefighter into being a true brand ambassador for the City of Tshwane and the Emergency Services Department through the publication of his book, Firefighter: First and Foremost. The book chronicles his journey as a firefighter and his love for the job, and it takes the reader through the international rescue missions that he has participated in in Haiti, the Philippines and Japan. A book launch will be held at Tshwane House on 21 September 2019.
Both Mr Mnguni and Dr Kok are sources of pride for the City, and we recognise their individual accomplishments above and beyond their respective contributions to the City of Tshwane as employees.