The 2021 Integrity Icons share what integrity means to them

Accountability Lab SA is part of a global network of labs working on good governance and anti-corruption. Their Annual Integrity Icon Awards celebrate the contributions of exemplary civil servants from different sectors. These sectors include health, social development and education. 

The campaign is active in 14 countries. It aims to “name and fame” civil servants who embody integrity and accountability. The campaign celebrates those who go beyond the call of duty to deliver quality services in the communities they serve. 

The winning Integrity Icons include civil servants in the health sector, education and social development. These are the Icons for 2021. 


Improving ethical leadership in our public institutions

Vuyokazi Langbooi

Vuyokazi Langbooi is a social worker in the township of Ibhayi in the Eastern Cape. She has exemplified multiple facets of selflessness, conviction and commitment not only to her work but the upliftment of her community.

What does integrity mean to Vuyokazi?

“It is about going above and beyond the call of duty. Respecting the people you work with and most of all it is about servanthood.”


What It Means To Be Crowned ‘Integrity Icon’

Joyce Buthelezi 

Joyce Buthelezi is a primary school teacher in the small town of Richmond, KwaZulu-

Natal. With over 15 years in service, Buthelezi has been a true source of compassion to her students, co-workers and community. Buthelezi has been able to create a safe space for learners. This is in a time when the difficult challenges of their home lives had proved tumultuous for the young people in her care.

What does integrity mean to Joyce?

“Integrity means to be unwavering in my beliefs no matter the situation.”

Carmelita Kok 

Sister Carmelita Kok is a beloved nurse in the community of Fish Hoek. She is described as a benevolent healthcare worker, thoroughly dedicated to her craft. She has been in service for 25 years. 

What does integrity mean to Sr Kok?

“It’s doing the right thing whether or not someone is watching. In the workplace, employees that act with Integrity will always tell the truth, are accountable and treat co-workers, stakeholders and clients with respect.”

Mncedi Mtengwana 

Mncedi Mtengwana is school principal at Solomon Mahlangu High School in Uitenhage in East London. Mtengwana works to ensure that the school grounds are a safe space for learners and their educators.

What does integrity mean to Mr Mtengwana?

“To me the term “integrity” is a title for important values such as respect, honesty, humility, forgiveness, and appreciation.”


Introducing South Africa’s ‘Integrity Icon’ Public Servants

Doctors of Baragwanath

Professor Ziyaad Dangor, a paediatric pulmonologist and Dr. Kavita Makan, a rheumatologist. Both work at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Academic Hospital (Bara) in Soweto, Johannesburg. 

Professor Ziyaad Dangor

Dangor is a paediatric pulmonologist from Lenasia in the south of Johannesburg. He works with children and their families at Bara to treat and improve the respiratory health diseases experienced by young people. 

What does integrity mean to Professor Dangor?

“Doing what is right when it’s easy to do wrong.”

Dr. Kavita Makan

Makan works as a rheumatologist at Bara. Her contribution towards the treatment and management of the Covid-19 pandemic has been immense for both the hospital and her patients.

What does integrity mean to Dr Kavita Makan?

“Integrity means you are true to yourself and would do nothing that demeans or

dishonors you.”

The Icons will share the motivations behind their incredible careers and an awards ceremony will take place on Friday, December 3, 2021, in Johannesburg. Watch their short films and vote for your People’s Choice Award today via the voting link below. 

The People’s Choice awards are not linked to the awards show. Accountability Lab SA sets up the Integrity Icon People’s Choice Award to get the public involved in the campaign. It is also to drive conversations around what leadership with integrity looks like in the public service.

All six Integrity Icons announced for 2021 are considered winners. The People’s Choice Award is an additional award that Accountability Lab SA gives out at their awards ceremony to celebrate the civil servant that South Africans felt most connected to.


Integrity Idol Celebrates Unsung Public Officials

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