2014 CESA AON Engineering Excellence Awards

Consulting Engineers South Africa’s (CESA) prestigious CESA Aon Engineering Excellence Awards held at Vodacom World in Midrand on the 12th August this year is a celebration of innovation, quality, outstanding workmanship and professionalism in the industry. CESA is proud to host this annual event, sponsored by Aon South Africa, as a platform to showcase the important role that infrastructure plays in the sustainable development of our country. The Awards focus on consulting engineers and their clients who participate in or initiate projects that promote the advancement of our nation and the people of the continent.

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Improved service delivery; hospitals, schools, clinics; water and sanitation; electrification and transportation; rail, ports, airports and road systems; all of these are aimed at supporting the economy and improving the lives of all within our beautiful and diverse country. There is no denying that Consulting Engineers are at the forefront of infrastructure development. Our country’s National Development Plan was created in order to develop the South African economy. Government through the NDP has identified infrastructure development as key to the socio economic development of the country. Adequate infrastructure is one of the areas crucial to encouraging investment.

With Government’s plan to grow the economy and triple GDP by 2030 the Consulting Engineering Industry has a significant role to play in achieving this growth through infrastructure provision. CESA’s over 500 member firms currently employing in excess of 23 500 highly skilled people are ready and waiting to assist Government with the implementation of the NDP. This is so important if we are to increase employment and overcome inequality within our vibrant country.

CESA truly believes that ……SUSTAINING CONSULTING ENGINEERING IS KEY TO GROWING THE ECONOMY…….improving the quality of life for all South Africans.

Minister of Water and Sanitation, Ms Nomvula Mokonyane was among the special VIP guests attending the Awards. In her speech she focused on the role that Consulting Engineers can play in partnering with Government to ensure the roll out of the Government Infrastructure Programme. Other dignitaries attending the Awards include Ismail Vadi, Member of the Executive Council for Roads and Transport of Gauteng Provincial Government and The Treasurer General of the ruling party, Dr Zweli Mkhize.

Risk advisors and insurance brokerage Aon South Africa has been the proud main sponsor of the event for a number of years. According to Manager of Professional Risks at Aon, Malcolm Padayachee, “CESA members have a pivotal role in South African society and in the greater South African economy. The progress of this country and its sustainability is touched on a daily basis by some facet of engineering and without this science, the vast majority of development and upliftment we need would not happen. But complicating the overall operating scenario of consulting engineers are factors such as new legislation, new procurement regulations, skills shortages, declining education standards and increased litigiousness. “Moreover, on a macro level there are issues relating to slow private sector and government fixed investment and ‘extraneous’ elements such as the new emphasis on green development, all of which represents additional pressures on pricing, competitiveness and procurement for the consulting engineer. The country as a whole is under huge pressure to accelerate infrastructure development to minimise the impact of the soft global economy and to drive employment and job creation. An enormous responsibility lies upon the shoulders of consulting engineers in South Africa, but by the same token, to deliver on these responsibilities, consulting engineers have to operate in a secure, risk managed environment. It’s our role at Aon South Africa to facilitate that environment with our world risk solutions, people and services,” concludes Malcolm.

Awards were handed out in the following categories: Engineering Excellence for projects with a value of less than R50million; projects between R50million and R250million and for projects with a value of over R250million; Best International Project; Visionary Client of the Year; Mentor of the Year; Business Excellence; Mentoring Company of the Year; Young Engineer of the Year; Publisher of the Year; Job Shadow Initiative; and Branch of the Year.

The category of Engineering Excellence with a value greater than R250 million was won by AECOM for the Spring Grove Dam and Appurtenant Works for TCTA with commendations going to GIBB for the Kalagadi Manganese Railway Siding Project for Kalagadi Manganese; and AECOM for the Komati Water Supply Augmentation Scheme for TCTA.

The category of Engineering Excellence with a value between R50 million and R250 million was won by Aurecon for the Malmesbury Wastewater Treatment Works for Swartland Municipality with commendations going to Jeffares & Green for the Electron Road Waste Management Facility for the eThekwini Municipality: Durban Solid Waste; and Aurecon for Grundfos Office and Warehouse for Growthpoint Properties

The category of Engineering Excellence with a value less than R50 million, was won by Aurecon for the KwaMashu Interchange Upgrade for SANRAL with commendations going to GIBB for the Factreton Informal sector electrification project for the City of Cape Town; and SMEC South Africa for the Isando Pedestrian Bridge – “The Walking Wonder” for SANRAL.

In the category of Best International Project, sponsored by the Built Environment Professionals Export Council (BEPEC), Jeffares & Green as part of the Lowlands Waterworks Joint Venture was announced as winner for the Metolong Dam Pedestrian Bridge for the Metolong Authority (Lesotho).

Nyeleti Consulting was announced winner of the Business Excellence category. In an effort to promote mentorship of young engineers CESA recognises the contribution Mentors make to the industry and the future of the profession. Nyeleti Consulting also won the Mentoring Company of the Year category once again sponsored by Bosch Holdings. Vernon Joubert from GIBB won the category of Mentor of the Year. In recognition of the role that the media plays in the industry, Creamer Media received recognition for Publishing Excellence: Trade Media and Independent Newspapers received recognition for Publishing Excellence: Daily Newspapers.

In the Visionary Client of the Year category, CESA nominates candidates for the award, who must then consent to their nomination. Nominees in this category can be from the public, parastatal or private sectors, and are judged inter alia on their contribution to sustainable economic job creation in South Africa and or Africa. Creating sustainable development in communities through skills and knowledge transfer is an equally important factor. The judges also look at the opportunities provided for the growth and expression of professionals, including those from formerly disadvantaged communities. Projects should also have embraced innovative designs that highlight the ability of South Africans in the technological field. CESA this year gave recognition, in the category of Visionary Client of the Year to the Department of Water and Sanitation’s Policy and Regulations Directorate.

In order to promote the Consulting Engineering industry to young professionals, CESA recognises the contribution young engineers make to the industry and to the future of the profession. Naturally the winner must be available to receive the award and attend the International Federation of Consulting Engineers (FIDIC) convention. Furthermore, he or she must be available to serve on CESA’s Young Professional’s Forum for a 12-month period. Judges look for outstanding performance in areas including technical achievement on a project; educational achievement; recognition such as awards received; contributions to sustainable development – such as environmental initiatives, social responsibilities, and community involvement. And finally, the winner in this category must have leadership ability, and contribute to the image of the firm and the industry as a whole. Once again, this year the Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) sponsored the Young Engineer of the Year Award, enabling the winner to attend the FIDIC convention to be held in Seoul, Korea this year. The winner in the category of Young Engineer of the Year is Makotsene Makgalemele from HHO Africa with Dr Cobus van Dyk from UWP Consulting receiving a commendation.

ILISO Consulting was announced winner of the CESA Job Shadow Initiative with Royal HaskoningDHV and GIBB named as runners-up. CESA’s KwaZulu Natal Branch was named winner of the Branch of the Year Award.