Independent Non-Executive Director

The Southern African Development Community Groundwater Management Institute (SADC-GMI) was established in 2009 as a regional center of excellence on groundwater management hosted by the University of the Free State in Bloemfontein, South Africa on behalf of and under the strategic guidance of the SADC Secretariat, Directorate of Infrastructure and Services – Water Division, in Gaborone, Botswana.

The Vision of the SADC-GMI is “To be a Centre of Excellence in promoting equitable and sustainable groundwater management in the SADC region”. The vision is brought to life through the following 6 mission statements:

  1. Create an enabling environment for groundwater management through the improvement, development and harmonization of policy, legal and regulatory frameworks.
  2. Lead and promote regional coordination, across various spatial scales, for groundwater management and development.
  3. Support infrastructure development for improved groundwater management and sustainable groundwater development.
  4. Promote and coordinate action-oriented research to support the development of regional understanding of groundwater resources.
  5. Promote impact-oriented capacity building and training to develop a growing cohort of groundwater expertise across the region
  6. Advocate, raise awareness and provide support regarding the understanding of sustainable groundwater management through the dissemination of data, information and knowledge products, supported by ongoing knowledge management.

SADC-GMI is established as a Section 21 not-for-profit company (NPC) under the South African Companies Act No. 71 of 2008, as amended. The company is run by an 8 Member Board of Directors composed of representatives from the SADC Member States (4No), University of the Free State (2No), an Executive Director and SADC Secretariat’s Water Division as the Chair. Since its belated official launch on 20 September 2016, SADC-GMI has been funded from implementing the Sustainable Groundwater Management in SADC Member States Project supported by the World Bank (through the support of the Global Environment Facility and the Cooperation in International Waters in Africa trust fund). This project will officially end on 30 June 2019 with the possibility of a no-cost extension to compensate for the nearly 2-year delay in starting. More information about SADC-GMI can be obtained from

Through the 5-year Strategic and Financial Sustainability Plan (2018-2023), SADC-GMI is expected to grow its brand and diversify its income streams in order to guarantee long term financial sustainability. A key prerequisite in achieving this ambitious objective lies in upholding high standards in both financial management and the general operations of SADC-GMI. Although the Executive Director is charged with these latter responsibilities, there is insufficient oversight from the Board of Directors due to lack of skills.

The SADC-GMI Board of Directors therefore seeks to enlist the services of a suitable Independent Non-Executive Director to assist with the oversight and guidance of SADC-GMI’s financial management and operational issues at the level of the Board.

The SADC-GMI Board hereby invites applications from suitably qualified candidates to fill this new position of Independent Non-Executive Director – Finance & Operations Management.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities:

The Independent Non-Executive Director will serve on the SADC-GMI Board of Directors as the primary resource for the following:

  • Advise the Executive Director and the Board on the elaboration, adoption and implementation of policies related to financial management, human resources management and development as well as other general operational procedures, guidelines and blueprints;
  • Assist the company to identify and comply with different policies, legislation and guidelines governing its operations in South Africa;
  • Serve as Chair of the company’s Audit Committee;
  • Serve as Chair of the company’s Finance Committee;
  • Serve as the key resource person in the Board on issues regarding finance and the general operational management of the company;
  • Assist the Board in interpreting various reports pertaining to the performance of the management and staff in meeting agreed goals and objectives;
  • Support the Board and management on the integrity of financial information and building financial controls and systems of risk management that are robust and defensible.
  • Perform any other tasks as delegated by the Board of Directors from time to time

Person Specification

Your application should demonstrate the following:

Essential criteria

  • Outstanding leadership, teamwork, listening and influencing skills;
  • Previous board level experience with specific experience in the NPO/NPC environment highly regarded
  • Experience in at least one of the following areas is mandatory: financial management, auditing and finance
  • Experience in the following areas is additional and highly regarded: operations management, human resources management, risk management
  • Sound judgment, analysis and decision making skills; and the ability to provide a challenging and supportive role to the Executive Director and other senior team members;
  • Open mindedness and willingness to engage with a wide stakeholder group from diverse national, regional and professional backgrounds;
  • Proven corporate governance skills;
  • A good track record of delivery at board level and the skills to represent and promote the company;
  • A relevant degree qualification in the major disciplines necessary for this role;
  • Expertise level understanding of audit, finance and operations management practices and standards relevant as will be applicable to a regional NPC like SADC-GMI;
  • Familiarity with the water sector, and particularly the groundwater sector as it applies to SADC-GMI is highly regarded;
  • Clear understanding of the SADC structures and systems.

Desirable criteria

  • Registration to relevant professional bodies that will benefit SADC-GMI

Additional Considerations

  • Applicants must be nationals of one of the SADC Member States;
  • Applications received after the closing date will not be considered;
  • Only those candidates that are short-listed for interviews will be notified. If you do not hear from us one month after the closing date then you may consider your application as not having been successful on this occasion;
  • Qualified female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply;
  • The SADC-GMI Board reserves the right to appoint a candidate with the nearest fit to the ideal profile advertised or not to appoint anyone to the post;

Time Commitment and Compensation

The SADC-GMI Board of Directors meets up to four times each year (ideally in March, June, September and December) and the Independent Non-Executive Director should attend all the meetings.

The Independent Non-Executive Director – Finance & Operations Management will be appointed for an initial 3 year term, which may be renewed by mutual consent.

This is a voluntary position which is not remunerated other than for:

  • Reimbursement of travel expenses to attend board meetings and events, and
  • For each Board meeting/event attended, the payment of a sitting allowance determined by the Board of Directors from time to time.

How To Apply

The closing date for applications is 15 February 2019.

Late applications will not be accepted.

Interested applicants should submit the following documents by email:

  • A Covering Letter setting out how you meet the Essential Criteria
  • A detailed CV

Applications will be acknowledged upon receipt.