The executive chairman of The Sekunjalo Investment Group, Dr Iqbal Survé, is pleased to announce the appointment of Zenariah Barends as senior executive for the group.
Barends’ association with The Sekunjalo Group goes back to 1998 when she was a member of the team responsible for the listing of the fledgling BEE investment company on the JSE. At Sekunjalo, Barends held various senior positions, working closely with the office of the CEO and executive chairman, Dr Iqbal Survé.
In her new position as senior executive for the holding company, Barends’ expanded portfolio will include management responsibility for legal services, communication and media liaison, multi-lateral engagement, international relations, talent development, academic engagement and transformation.
Commenting on Barends’ appointment, Dr Survé said, “I am pleased to be making this announcement about Zenariah’s new position. I have known her for two decades, since she joined the Sekunjalo Group as a young women, fresh out of heading an Investigative Unit at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). She has consistently demonstrated her capacity to learn, lead and rise to new challenges. Her appointment at the holding company is a logical step as we strengthen the leadership and management capacity at Sekunjalo”.
Barends expressed her delight, “I started at Sekunjalo at 1998, when we had very little, using doors as tables and sharing chairs. To be part of the history of a company which is purpose-driven, committed to transformation and excellence makes me so proud. In my new position, I want to continue to contribute to the growth and development of Sekunjalo and its people.”
Barends retains her position as chief of staff of Independent Media. She is also a board member of JSE-listed AEEI (Pty) Ltd, where she chairs the Transformation Committee. In addition, she serves in various capacities in Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) including as chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Inyathelo: The South African Institute for Advancement and the Delft Big Band. Zenariah has a strong passion for the development of the arts and was a founder member of the Cape Cultural Collective.
Historically, Zenariah has a varied career journey, with history in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), an institute set up to investigate human rights abuses during Apartheid, where she headed up the Western Cape Investigative Unit. Zenariah also has an education background, as a researcher at the University of the Western Cape (UWC) Education Policy Unit (EPU) where she conducted research into post-apartheid higher education policy. Prior to that she was a Sociology lecturer at UWC.