Pallo Jordan visits UCT campus

17 Mar 2017 - 14:30

Mr Pallo Jordan (centre) took a tour of the AC Jordan Building, named after his late father Professor Archibald Campbell Jordan. He was accompanied by Professor Lungisile Ntsebeza and Dr.Nkululeko Mabandla from the Centre for African Studies.

Mr. Zweledinga Pallo Jordan paid an impromptu visit to Upper Campus on Monday, 13 March. He is the eldest child of the late Professor Archibald Campbell and Dr. Phyllis Priscilla “Nogqaza” Ntantala-Jordan, both of whom have deep connections to the University of Cape Town. The Humanities Arts Block was officially renamed the AC Jordan Building in August 2014.

Mr. Pallo Jordan is a well-known South African politician. He was a member of the ANC’s National Executive Committee and a Cabinet Minister from 1994 to 2009. His association with UCT and the Centre for African Studies is primarily through his father, the late Professor Jordan, who was the first black African academic appointed at UCT (1946 -1961) and the first black African scholar in UCT’s history to obtain a PhD from the institution (in 1956). The AC Jordan Chair in African Studies was established at UCT in 1993 in order to provide a meaningful study of Africa. 

Director of the Centre for African Studies and holder of the AC Jordan Chair in African Studies, Professor Lungisile Ntsebeza hosted the recent campus visit. Jordan, who was accompanied by his daughter and granddaughter, took the opportunity to tour the AC Jordan Building and view the commemorative plaque and exterior building banners.  He recounted stories of his visits to UCT during his youth and, was able to remember the exact location of his father's old office, on the top floor of the building. “Since the passing away of his mother in 2016, Mr. Jordan is now the main link between the Jordan family and the Centre for African Studies. An intellectual in his own right, CAS is establishing intellectual links with Mr. Pallo Jordan, initially around a planned symposium to honour his parents. My wish is that he will accept my offer to become a senior research associate at UCT and write his memoirs,” says Ntsebeza.

The Centre for African Studies will host the symposium on the life and scholarly contribution of Professor AC Jordan, later in 2017.