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SAIRAC AGM heats up Cape Town

This year it was Cape Town’s turn to host the national SAIRAC annual general meeting (AGM) and the local centre took the opportunity to also host its regional AGM.

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New SAIRAC Cape Town chairman, Elbrecht Oswald.

The South African Institute of Refrigeration and Air Conditioning (SAIRAC) hosted its national AGM on 15 August at the Italian Club in Cape Town. But first, the Cape Town centre handled its local AGM, giving feedback on the past year.

Steven Friedmann, the centre’s treasurer, handled the treasurer’s report, running through the numbers. Then, Gavin Wiffen, Cape Town’s SAIRAC centre chairman, took over to talk about what the centre set out to achieve in 2017. He gave feedback on the membership numbers as well as the various courses the centre hosted and the social calendar events that took place since the previous AGM.

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Grant Laidlaw giving his president’s report.

Elbrecht Oswald was introduced as the new Cape Town centre chairman and the following members make up his new committee (portfolios to be assigned still at the time of publishing):

  • Cornel de Wet
  • Geno Demaio
  • Erik Kiderlen
  • Pangalele Madala
  • Louis Vermuelen
  • Gavin Wiffen

The centre also handed out various awards, including ‘best student – enrichment courses’, which went to:

  • Cornel de Wet
  • Wayne Booth
  • Sean Boonzaaier/Elbrecht Oswald

The best student from Techniskills was awarded to the following students for achieving the best results:

  • Darryll Petersen – Coastal Air Conditioning
  • Phikolomzi Yenzela – SFI Group
  • Ebrahim Edward – Cape Automation Services
  • Cheslyn Vogt – Cape Automation Services

They all received a copy of Geoff Alder’s book Heat, Energy and Refrigeration as their prize.

National formalities
After a moment of silence for members who have passed away during the year, Grant Laidlaw, SAIRAC national president delivered the presidential report.

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Jaco Pieterse (right) of SAIRAC, awarded Tyrone Bunch the SAIRAC ‘Best Student’ award.

During his report, the votes for new vice president were counted officially. It will be announced later.

Laidlaw reported that SAIRAC now has 1 038 members in total with the highest percentage (47%) hailing from Johannesburg. He mentioned that the percentage of women in the association were still low and that they would like to improve these figures.

The overall best student award went to Tyrone Bunce, the refrigeration and air conditioning WorldSkills competitor who will be representing South Africa at WorldSkills in Abu Dhabi in October this year. Bunce came all the way from Durban to accept his award.

“We had a great year and we thank you all for your help,” Laidlaw concluded his report.

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Guest speaker, Kelly Gendall, talking about the new BB-BEE scorecard and its challenges.

Next up the national treasurer, John Ackermann, gave feedback on the association’s financials and reported that everything looked healthy.

Then came the time to finally announce the results of the election. Marius Le Grange was voted in as the new SAIRAC national vice president.

All about BB-BEE
The guest speaker for the evening was Kelly Gendall of Gendall Associates, a business consultant and BB-BEE consultant who spoke on where we are today in terms of the BB-BEE requirements and how he envisages going forward. His aim was to ‘demystify’ BB-BEE and take the fear away.

He briefly discussed the scorecard and how to get points. He stressed that planning and organising was key and that you cannot leave BB-BEE to the last minute.

After his talk, everyone enjoyed some of the Italian Club’s famous pizza among other snacks.



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