Southern African Rhodes Scholars for 2022 Have Been Announced #ThisIsUs


Ten exceptional young people from Southern Africa have been announced as Rhodes Scholars-Elect for 2022 including a graduate from eSwatini, thought to be the first from that country, and two Scholars hailing from the same small town in the Eastern Cape.


The National Secretary of the Rhodes Scholarships for Southern Africa, Mr Ndumiso Luthuli, announced that Rhodes Scholarships had been awarded to ten outstanding young leaders, from across the Southern African constituency (comprising South Africa, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia and eSwatini), to further their post-graduate studies at Oxford University (United Kingdom) commencing October 2022.


Our 2022 Rhodes Scholars-Elect are diverse in backgrounds and disciplines; but all share the following qualities: academic excellence and intellectual curiosity; energy to use their talents to the fullest; courage to lead and make a difference; moral force of character, quiet determination and integrity; and a commitment to service and making a positive impact on the broader community.


For the second year in a row, the global pandemic required the Rhodes Trust to be agile and resilient. Travel restrictions and lockdowns still in place in September 2021, resulted in virtual selections taking place over the following two months in Southern Africa.


Our finalists and selectors did not disappoint. Across the sub-continent the selection committees rose to the challenge; seamlessly facilitating virtual selections across 10 regions.


The National Secretary of the Rhodes Scholarships in Southern Africa, Mr Ndumiso Luthuli, commented:

“In 2021 applications for the Southern African Rhodes Scholarships increased by 17%. Our selection committees were spoilt for choice and had excellent applicant pools from which to shortlist candidates for interviews. Overall, the virtual selection process has been iterative and thorough, rigorous but fairly implemented across the regions in Southern Africa.”


“We are excited by this new cohort of Rhodes Scholars-Elect, who have graduated from universities across our region, with six coming from UCT (University of Cape Town). For the first time ever, a graduate from eSwatini has been awarded the BLMNS Rhodes Scholarship. Two of the 2022 Scholars-Elect hail from the same rural hamlet, Matatiele, situated at the junction of the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu Natal and southern Lesotho –what are the odds?”


The Scholars selected have studied a panoply of subjects at the tertiary level, ranging from economics and philosophy, to law and industrial engineering, to medicine and psychology, to electrical engineering and development. All are academically gifted, socially committed, and exceptional young leaders, who we believe will have impact on Africa and the world in the years to come.”


The 2022 Rhodes Scholarships for Southern Africa have been awarded to (in alphabetical order):


  Name Rhodes Scholarship for 2021
1 Ms Takhona Hlatshwako BLMNS Rhodes Scholar 2022 (eSwatini)
2 Mr Colin Kinghorn South Africa-at-Large 2022
3 Ms Bomikazi Lupindo South Africa-at-Large 2022
4 Dr Wakithi Mabaso South Africa-at-Large 2022
5 Ms Claire McCann South Africa-at-Large 2022
6 Mr Gareth McHardy South African Colleges School (SACS) & Partner Schools, 2022
7 Dr Ruan Spies Paul Roos Gymnasium & Partner Schools, Stellenbosch 2022
8 Mr Kukhokuhle Tsengwa South Africa –at-Large 2022
9 Mr Justin Winchester South Africa –at-Large 2022
10 Mr Wiseman Zondi KwaZulu-Natal 2022


(To read more about our 2022 Southern African Rhodes Scholars-Elect, please see the profiles at the end of the press statement.)


The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for courageous, impactful leaders, working across borders and across disciplines, collaborating on big global issues and seeking solutions. People of vision, dedicated to service of others.


Described as “a globally inclusive and thoughtful community of leaders”, the Rhodes Scholarships are awarded to young graduates of outstanding intellect and character, with proven leadership abilities and a commitment to service. The awards are granted to high potential all-rounders and are based on talent and excellence, irrespective of the field of study. Selection of Rhodes Scholars is made without regard to gender, gender identity, marital status, sexual orientation, race, ethnic origin, colour, religion, social background, caste, or disability.


The Rhodes Scholarships were first awarded in 1903 (, following a significant bequest. Annually, more than 100 Rhodes Scholarships are bestowed to high achieving, young graduates from 60 countries across the world. The ten Southern African Rhodes Scholars will join a further 92 international students in Oxford, who will make up the Class of 2022.


A list of Rhodes Scholars from Southern Africa reveals a distinguished cohort committed to their country, to impacting positively on the lives of their fellow South Africans, and to standing up for the world. Notable South African Rhodes Scholars include, amongst others:

  • Justice Edwin Cameron, retired Judge of the Constitutional Court, currently the Inspecting Judge of Correctional Services and recipient of the Order of the Baobab (Gold) in 2021
  • Trudi Makhaya: current Economic advisor to President Cyril Ramaphosa
  • Kumi Naidoo, Secretary General of Amnesty International and the first African Head of Greenpeace International (2009-15)
  • The late Shaun Johnson: Journalist, author and founding CEO of the Mandela Rhodes Foundation
  • Eusebius McKaiser: former talk show host on Radio 702 and CapeTalk, political analyst, lecturer and author.
  • Jacko Maree: former-CEO of the Standard Bank and currently deputy Chair of the Standard Bank Group, Chairman of Liberty Holdings Limited and Liberty Group Limited.
  • Isaac Shongwe: Chief Executive Officer of Barloworld Logistics Africa, the founder of Letsema Holdings, and Chairman of the Wits University Council
  • Kuseni Dlamini: business mogul who has been at the helm of 9 different companies, including Old Mutual. He is currently Chairman for Aspen Pharmacare Holdings Ltd, Non-Executive Chairman for KDI (Pty) Ltd, Chairman of Massmart Holdings Ltd, and Chairman of the Pretoria University Council.
  • Dr Loyiso Nongxa: former Vice-Chancellor of Wits
  • Dr Max Price: former Vice-Chancellor of UCT
  • Justice Belinda van Heerden: former Judge of the Supreme Court of Appeal
  • RW Johnson: journalist, political scientist, and historian
  • Dr Charles Simkins: former professor of Economics at Wits University and St Augustine’s College; and lead researcher at the Helen Suzman Foundation