SACI News July - Dec 2019

We hope that all is progressing well with our members.  We are almost at the end of 2019 and it will soon be the holiday season.  There have been a number of connectivity issues with the SACI Office and hence the difficulty in sending out regular newsletters.  We hope these issues are now resolved.  Our new SACI President, Professor Peter Mallon, was inaugurated at the SACI AGM in August and the various SACI Awards were also announced there.  Congratulations to all the awardees for this wonderful achievement!  Keep up the good work and the face of chemistry in our country.  This month we have news from our Western Cape Section plus a number of articles of interest.

On behalf of SACI we wish all our members a wonderful and blessed festive season.  We hope you will be able to spend time with family and friends and enjoy some relaxation time.  We wish everyone everything of the very best for 2020 – may it be an excellent year!!

Bice Martincigh


  • SACI office address and times

  • Problems at the SACI Office

  • Advertising in the SACI newsletter

  • Pay your SACI membership fees with SnapScan

  • From the President’s Desk

  • Of interest to academics

  • Register as a Professional Chemist with SACI

  • Congratulations to our SACI award winners!

  • Bravo Luigi!

  • Member News

  • Former SACI Presidents Honoured

  • Sections and Divisions News

  • Report on 15th Frank Warren Organic Chemistry Conference

  • Report on ENSTIN 2019 Symposium

  • Accelerate Sustainable Chemistry

  • RSC News

  • PACN News

  • NSTF News

  • IUPAC News

  • FASC News

  • CAIA Newsletter

  • South African Journal of Chemistry

  • African Journals of Chemistry

  • SACI and SACI-related conference events

  • Other Conferences

SACI office address and times

The SACI office, run by Laila Smith is located on the 1st Floor of Gate House, room 124. The telephone number is 011 717 6705 and e-mail address is: The cell number is 061 282 3477.

Office hours are from 8.30 am till 1.00 pm. She can be contacted at any time during her office hours.

Problems at the SACI Office

We sincerely apologise for the lack of connectivity with the SACI Office over the past few months.  Unfortunately, the SACI office e-mail address was off-line intermittently and for long periods and the SACI administrator, Laila Smith, may have been unable to respond to your queries.  The e-mail is now back and functional.  Should you not have received a response from her, please may we ask that you forward your mail again.

Tel.:  011 717 6705
Cell:  061 282 3477
Fax:  086 766 9041

SACI sincerely apologises for any inconvenience this may have caused our members.  The problem arose as a result of the change in software at Wits University.  The problem has now been identified correctly and we hope it will not recur.  We thank all our members for their patience.

Advertising in the SACI newsletter

The newsletter provides a means of getting messages to our membership. Currently the SACI membership stands at over 1000. This newsletter thus provides a means of advertising employment opportunities, conferences and workshops, and even for companies/Universities to promote themselves. We encourage members to use the Newsletter for advertising purposes. All SACI related conferences and events are advertised for free; if not a SACI related event there could be a small charge. For advertising costs contact Laila at the SACI office.   

Pay your SACI membership fees with SnapScan

For those wishing to pay via credit card please let Mrs Laila Smith know so she can generate an online payment and email you a link.


From the President’s Desk

It is a great pleasure for me to write my first report for the SACI Newsletter as the new President.  Firstly, on behalf of the Institute, I must thank Vincent Nyamori for his service as President of the Institute.  There have been many important developments for the Institute during Vincent’s term and his guidance and leadership through these changes has made sure that the Institute is in a very good position as we move forward.  I must also acknowledge and thank two stalwart member of the SACI Executive Committee (EXCO), who after many years of service on the EXCO, stepped down at the August Council meeting.  They are Neil Coville and Ian Bratt.  Their contributions to the Executive over many years cannot be over emphasized.  We must also thank Kudzai Mugadza who stepped down as the National Student Representative.  Her work on the EXCO and Council as the student representative is highly appreciated and we wish her well with her future endeavours.  Although no longer formally part of the EXCO, we trust that we can continue to rely on Neil, Ian and Kudzai’s wisdom and experience in terms of support for SACI and the EXCO.

I would also like to welcome the new members of the EXCO.  They are Ms Suzanne Finney (Treasurer), Prof Willem van Otterlo (Vice President), Dr Caren Billing (Co-opted), Prof Niki Bathori (Co-opted) and Ms Megan Mathews (as the new National Student Representative on EXCO).  SACI relies on the volunteerism and willingness of its members to take on leadership roles within the Institute.  I would therefore like to thank all these members for agreeing to contribute to the management and running of SACI for the next two years.

We should also acknowledge all the SACI members that serve on the various Sectional and Divisional Committees.  SACI is a professional body, but the Institute relies on its members to drive and manage the various sections and divisions and without the willingness of members to take on the leadership roles, the activities of the Institute would cease to exist.  I would especially like to congratulate all the newly elected Section and Divisional Chairs.  We look forward to their leadership and contributions to the Institute both within their Sections and Divisions and as members of the SACI Council.

The second half of 2019 has not been without its challenges for the Institute.  Since the middle of the year, the Secretariat has experienced major technical issues, especially with regards to e-mail communication.  The Secretariat is based at Wits University and for various reasons the SACI e-mail account has been blocked on numerous occasions.  There is no question that these difficulties have had a very serious negative impact on the functioning of the Institute, especially with regards to the administration of membership fees and the Newsletter, amongst others.  The EXCO has been given the assurance that these technical issues have been resolved and that we should not experience any more problems in the future.  I want to ask and thank all members for their understanding and patience as Laila tries to work through the backlog and especially as she traces the payments and receipt of membership fees.  Membership fees are the lifeblood of the Institute - we thank those members that have already paid and appeal to members that have not paid to do so as soon as possible. 

As we look forward to 2020 there are some exciting projects on the horizon.  Early in 2020 we will ask members to vote on the new and updated SACI constitution.  This new version of the constitution tries to bring it in line with the realities of the functioning of the Institute and to streamline some of the processes.  We really do owe a great deal of gratitude to Dr Ian Bratt for all his work in drafting and recommending the changes.  The EXCO is also currently working on a 5-year plan for the Institute and this will be finalized in the New Year.  This plan will focus on ten key areas, namely:

  • Role of the Institute
    Events (including Conferences and Conventions)
    Education (including professional designation and CPD)
    Succession planning (including diversity)
    Corporate governance (including administration)
    Strategic partnerships

SACI already has strong ties to several international organizations, most notably FASC (the Federation of African Chemical Societies) and IUPAC, amongst others.  In 2020, SACI will also be a founding member of Commonwealth Chemistry (the Federation of Commonwealth Chemistry Societies).  The formal launch of this initiative will take place at the Commonwealth Chemistry Congress in Trindad in May next year.  Vincent Nyamori and Bice Martincigh have make made very significant contributions to the task team setting up Commonwealth Chemistry.  I continue to serve on the task team and have had the chance to attend several meeting in Paris and London in this regard.  Vincent and Bice attended the meeting in Singapore on behalf of the Institute in September.  We also have the opportunity for three young scientists to represent the Institute at the meeting in May in Trindad.  Please keep an eye out for any further news and exciting opportunities that Commonwealth Chemistry will present to our members.

Finally, I want to wish all our members all the best for the festive season and I trust that you get a chance to rest and spend some time with your loved ones.  I hope that everyone will return in the New Year with renewed energy, including with energy to take part in and contribute to the activities of the SACI in 2020!

Warm regards


Of interest to academics

Register as a Professional Chemist with SACI

SACI is inviting its members to register as Professional Chemists.  The short abbreviation for the designation will be PrChemSA.  A member registered with SACI as a Professional Chemist can use the letters PrChemSA after their name e.g. George Brown PrChemSA

Chemistry a basic physical science which is a basis for many scientific and technological disciplines. This results in its graduates working in every sector imaginable.  We must therefore cater for a wide range of industries and economic sectors.  Any chemist who graduated with a four-year Honours Degree in Chemistry working in industry, commerce, government, academia, research, theoretical chemistry, experimental chemistry, and uses chemistry skills and thought processes in their job/career, is eligible to apply. 

However, a person first has to qualify to be an Ordinary member of SACI before they can be registered as a Professional Chemist. Check the SACI constitution regarding the criteria.

The PrChemSA designation will represent the highest standard of professionalism, competence and commitment to keep pace with advancing knowledge in the field of chemistry.  It is hoped that this designation will give a professional standing and recognition of chemistry by South African society.

Academic qualifications are only the beginning of a career in chemistry and its applications. The need for continuing professional development is widely recognised to be the mechanism by which professionals maintain their knowledge after the formal education process has been completed. PrChemSA demonstrates a commitment to maintaining competence, continuing your professional development and abiding by an acceptable code of conduct.


Congratulations to our SACI Award Winners

We wish to congratulate all the winners of the 2019 SACI Awards.  This is a wonderful achievement!
The 2019 winners are:

THE GOLD MEDAL  –  Prof Klaus Koch, Stellenbosch University

THE MERCK MEDAL  –  Lawrence M. Madikizela, as the senior author for the publication:  S. Afr. J. Chem., 2014, 67, 143-150, entitled: “Determination of Triclosan and Ketoprofen in River Water and Wastewater by Solid Phase Extraction and High Performance Liquid Chromatography” and authored by Lawrence M. Madikizela*, Sindisiwe F. Muthwa and Luke Chimuka.

THE CHEMICAL EDUCATION MEDAL  -  Mrs MH Du Toit, North West University

THE SACI POST-GRADUATE AWARDS -  Tabitha Amollo – University of KwaZulu-Natal
                                                                   Hanieh Montaseri – University of Pretoria
                                                                   Mathapela Seopela – Tshwane University of Technology
                                                                   Upenyu Muza – Stellenbosch University
                                                                   Lize Greyling – Nelson Mandela University


TP Mabate

University of Johannesburg, Auckland Park

Z Madikizela

University of Fort Hare

BA Fortuin

University of the Western Cape

SB Tshifaro

University of Venda

L Garnie

University of Cape Town

A Khasipo 

Nelson Mandela University

DB Malihase

Wits University

N Mqoni

North West University

WJ Rudolph

University of Pretoria

S Abdullah

University of KwaZulu-Natal

R Mphephu

University of Limpopo

JL Thibaud

Stellenbosch University

Y Sukku

Durban University of Technology

N Mpiti

Rhodes University

M Seloi

Vaal University of Technology

Bravo Luigi!!

Congratulations to long-time SACrS  and SACI member, Prof Luigi Nassimbeni, who has just been awarded the 1st International Alajos Kálmán Prize by the European Crystallographic Association!  This is in recognition for his outstanding scientific contributions in the field of structural sciences within the last 5-10 years; for his outstanding activity in supramolecular chemistry, revealing aspects of thermodynamics, kinetics and separation of inclusion compounds, and discovering the relevance of certain weak bonds in significant industrial processes.  His prize was awarded in August 2019 during the European Crystallographic Meeting in Vienna.  This is an outstanding achievement.  Well done Luigi!!

Member News

SACI recently received this fond remembrance of a SACI member, Barend Elzas, from his daughter, Barbara Pike.  She kindly donated his SACI ties to us (see photos below).



          Mrs Barbara Pike, daughter of Barend Elzas

             Donation of SACI ties

Former SACI Presidents Honoured

Two former SACI Presidents, James Darkwa and Bice Martincigh, were inaugurated as Members of the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) at the annual Awards Ceremony on 9 October 2019.  As the official Academy of South Africa, ASSAf has as core function to honour the country’s most outstanding scholars by electing them to Membership of the Academy.  ASSAf Members are drawn from the full spectrum of disciplines.

Sections and Divisions News

SACI Council and Annual General Meetings

The Council and Annual General Meetings of SACI were held on Thursday, 15 August at Wits University. 

At the AGM the new Life Members of the Institute were presented.  These are:

Name of Member

Date joined the Institute

Years of Membership


Dr LH Lotter




Dr HH Hahn




Mr MTS Britton




Mr JM Hofmeyr




Collectively, they have served the Institute for over 153 years!!  That is a phenomenal achievement and we wish to congratulate them and thank them profusely for their loyalty and dedication to the Institute!

The new Fellows of the Institute were also presented.  These are:

Name of Member



Professor Ray Haines

Western Cape

Professor Siegfried Drewes


Professor Tim Egan

Western Cape

Professor Susan Bourne

Western Cape

Mr George Carr


We also congratulate them on this wonderful achievement.

The SACI Council for the next two years 2019-2021 is as follows:




Mrs Laila Smith


Prof Peter Mallon

Immediate Past President

Prof Vincent Nyamori

Vice President

Prof Willem Van Otterlo

Executive Secretary

Prof Zenixole Tshentu

Executive Treasurer

Mrs Suzanne Finney

Co-opted Member

Dr Michael Booth

Co-opted Member

Prof Bice Martincigh

Co-opted Member

Prof Helder Marques

Co-opted Member

Dr Caren Billing

Co-opted Member

Prof Nikoletta Bathori


Prof Ernst Breet


Prof Peter Mallon


Prof Charles de Koning


Mrs Laila Smith


Prof Bice Martincigh

Student Representative

Megan Matthews


Prof T Naicker

Eastern Cape Section

Prof Rui Krause

KwaZulu-Natal Section

Prof B O Owaga

Central Section

Dr Andreas Lemmerer

North Section

Prof Comfort Nkambule

Western Cape Section

Prof. Nikoletta B. Báthori


Prof Patricia Forbes


Mr Brendon Naicker


Prof Matthew Nindi

Molecular Modelling

Dr CGCE van Sittert


Prof Omotayo Arotiba

Environmental Chemistry

Prof OJ Okonkwo

Carman (Physical Chemistry)


Organic Chemistry

Dr Clinton Veale

Inorganic Chemistry

Prof TJ Egan

Industrial Chemistry

Dr Michael Booth

Chemical Education

Dr Helen Drummond

Green Chemistry

Dr Rosalyn Klein


Dr Liezel van der Merwe

The financial statements of the past year were presented by the Treasurer, Dr Ian Bratt, and we are pleased that SACI is on a sound financial footing.

The AGM concluded with the address from the incoming SACI President, Professor Peter Mallon, who delivered a very stimulating talk on his current research on polymers.

Report from Western Cape Section

Cape Organometallic Symposium 2019
The Cape Organometallic Symposium is a long-standing event initiated in 2003 by Prof Helgard Raubenheimer (Stellenbosch University) and the late Prof John Moss (University of Cape Town). This year the symposium was hosted by the University of Cape Town on the 27th June 2019. The one-day symposium attracted researchers from all institutions across the Western Cape and afforded students from the respective research groups an opportunity to showcase their research, either in the form of an oral or poster presentation. The event featured a full day of exciting and topical science in the field of Organometallic and Transition Metal Chemistry, with general themes of synthesis / structure / materials and attendant applications in catalysis and biology, and other related fields.

This year’s event was arranged specially in honour of the 60th birthday celebration of Prof Selwyn Mapolie, a well-established and highly regarded scientist, to acknowledge and celebrate his contributions to Organometallic and Inorganic Chemistry. Apart from his scientific contributions, many chemistry professionals have evolved, including university academics and high-level industry researchers. The symposium underscored his personal influence on a whole generation of organometallic chemists in South Africa and his strong dedication to research.

By Greg Smith

AlchemUS Magic Show 2019
On 13 September 2019 AlchemUS, the student society of the Department of Chemistry and Polymer Science at Stellenbosch University, hosted their Magic Show. It is an annual event where local schools and the public are invited to watch a production made magical by chemical experiments. It is a social outreach for children in underprivileged primary schools in the Stellenbosch area to be introduced to science in a fun way. This year a total of 236 school learners were invited to the show, which is one of the biggest audiences to attend in many years.

The grade 5 learners of St Idas primary, Kayamandi Primary and Cloetesville Primary came to Stellenbosch University to attend the show held in the First Year Building. Busses were arranged to transport the learners from their schools to the university and back, made possible by the financial assistance from SACI Western Cape and SUNCOI.

Since 2019 is the International Year of the Periodic Table, the theme for the show was Periodic Table based. The story was about a group of Reject Superheroes who needed to travel back in time and save Dimitri Mendeleev, who was kidnapped in an attempt to stop him from developing the Periodic Table. The show was made magical by chemical experiments incorporated into the story, like the heroes using invisible ink to find out the location of the villain’s lair, or Mendeleev using elephant’s toothpaste to celebrate being back in his laboratory. The Head of Department for Chemistry and Polymer Science at SU, Prof Peter Mallon, welcomed all the students with a short talk on the importance of the Periodic Table. The show was also followed by a presentation on the chemistry behind the magic by PhD student, Dewald van Heerden, where the science behind the experiments used in the show was explained.

AlchemUS would like to thank everyone who helped make the event a success, including all the scriptwriters, the actors, the experimental team, and people who helped prepare everything for the show: Sebasian Nieto Lawrence, Heinrich Laker, Dr Rehana Malgas-Enus, Jaco van Rooyen, Nonkosi Matinise, James Crowder, Nicole Visagie, Jan Costandius, Jaques Buys, Kayah Gould, Lydia Jordaan, Caylin Visagie, Marisa Strydom, Megan Matthews, Remofilwe Manye, Stacey Roman, Gabby Garbonova, and Jan Costandius.

We are especially grateful for SACI Western Cape division and SUNCOI for their financial contributions. Hopefully we build on the success of this year’s show to make next year’s event even bigger and better.

By Marisa Strydom (AlchemUS chairperson)

Intervarsity Quiz Night 2019
The 2019 Intervarsity Quiz Night was held at Stellenbosch University on the 19th of September. A single team from UCT, pitted against seven teams of students and academics mainly from Stellenbosch, was victorious and therefore defended the institution's title from the previous quiz in 2016. The winning UCT team comprised Jean and Stephen (H3D), Nicole and Richard (Supramolecular Group), and Ola, Iqbal and Doaa (Hunter Group). Due to student unrest, full teams from CPUT and UWC were unfortunately unable to participate.

A big thank you, also, to Prof David Gammon who compiled the questions - ranging from the Periodic Table to sport, geography and South African current affairs - and Prof Alan Hutton who played the role of quiz master in his inimitable style, occasionally keeping the teams (with names ranging from "Space Group" and "Uncertainty Principles" to "The Element of Surprise") in check.

Thank you to SACI and the RSC for their support and to Megan and her colleague Chandre for their efforts to prepare such an enjoyable, successful and well-run event that contributed towards building a sense of camaraderie amongst our community of chemists, and permitted colleagues (for a night, at least!) to let down their hair.

By John Woodland

Rainbow, Bingo for the Beautiful: Celebrating the International Year of the Periodic Table at Cape Peninsula University of technology

The celebration of the 150th anniversary of Mendeleev’s Periodic Table was a special event for Chemists and Scientists to partake in. The occasion was promoted by the South African Chemical Institute with sponsorship of funds to make this a special day in the lives of the Students, Staff, Technical staff and Learners in the new Chemistry building at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology.

The department has a Service Learning Project with an NGO in Phillipi, called Beautiful Gate. It seemed appropriate to invite 60 high school learners, all Physical Science students, to celebrate with us at CPUT. They were transported by bus to the campus and joined us for games in the Chemical Engineering and Chemistry building.

We began with “Bingo” with the Learners in groups of four, trying to outsmart each other with the CPUT Master’s students Yamkela and Bongi calling out clues for them to solve. Some were easy, others more difficult for the Learners from Grade 8 to 12, trying to find answers we had posted around the room. The groups were all named after Periodic Table groupings. The halogens and transition metal groups were Bingo stars.

The CPUT students had been assigned a poster assignment in their subject Atomic Spectroscopy. The groups had made posters which dealt with the history of the Periodic Table, and an element they had chosen to discuss. The posters were erected in the foyer of the building and were judged by two staff members, Ncediwe Ndube-Tsolekile and Niki Bathori. The students shared their interest in the posters compared a wide range of emission spectra for the elements.

CPUT’s Service Learning Department came on board and provided the participants with a light lunch of hot dogs and a drink.

A day at a Chemistry department would be amiss without a visit to the laboratories. The Postgrad students and Technical staff had set up a variety of experiments for the Learners to observe. PostDoc David organized the groups to visit the laboratories and see Elephant’s toothpaste, White smoke, the reaction of lithium and sodium in a water bath, and a rainbow of colours burning in methanol. This was definitely the highlight of the day and we watched Zandi and Pumza (Technical staff), Lucie, Yamkela and Bongi showing us the wonders of Chemistry. The CPUT assistants were all wearing SACI Periodic Day T-shirts, much to the envy of the Learners and students.

During the afternoon, the Learners made Newspaper Gazettes with information on the history of the Periodic Table. The Alkali metals and Noble gas groups presented us with beautiful Newspaper pages. Master’s student Justin gave them a short talk on Chemistry based on the Periodic Table. We judged them all as the best groups with awards of chocolates and at the end of the day an Element Cookie for them to eat as they left CPUT.

Our gratitude goes to SACI for the sponsorship received, CPUT Service Learning Department for their assistance with lunch and corporate gifts, and to the Chemistry Department and HOD, Vernon Somerset, for hosting the day. We are most grateful to Beautiful Gate NGO for allowing the Learners to visit us, and we hope they enjoyed their afternoon at CPUT. Our thanks also goes to Junia, Eudes and Roland (Postgrad students) for their assistance and support of the day.

Organiser and Reporter: Associate Professor Merrill Wicht

Report on 15th Frank Warren Organic Chemistry Conference

Report on ENSTIN 2019 Symposium

Report on the “Energy Storage and Industry 4.0: Challenges and Prospects (ENSTIN 2019)” Symposium, 31st July – 2nd August 2019

The “Energy Storage and Industry 4.0: Challenges and Prospects (ENSTIN 2019)” Symposium was held at the KwaMaritane Bush Lodge, Pilanesberg National Park, South Africa from 31 July to 2nd August 2019. The symposium was a pre-satellite meeting of the 70th Annual Meeting of the International Society of Electrochemistry (70th ISE AM) that took place at the Durban International Convention Centre (Durban ICC) from the 4th to the 9th August 2019.

ENSTIN 2019 was a huge success, attracting 81 participants from 14 countries (China, Taiwan, Germany, Sweden, Hungary, Canada, USA, Switzerland, Japan, Australia, Austria, France, Nigeria and South Africa).

The opening remark was given by Prof Kenneth Ozoemena (Chair & Organiser of the event) while the delegates were welcomed by Mr Mbangiseni Mabudafhasi (on behalf of the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI).

The program included 3 plenary lectures, 5 keynote lectures, 9 invited lectures, 15 oral presentations, 22 poster presentations and equipment/instrument exhibition by sponsors.  Prof Phuti Ngoepe (University of Limpopo) delivered the first plenary lecture on Wednesday 31st July entitled: “Atomistic simulation studies on nano-architectured electrodes for lithiumi-ion batteries”.  On Thursday, 1 August, two plenary lectures were given by Dr Montse Galceran Mestres (CIC Energuine, Spain) on “Exploring electrode materials for sodium-ion batteries: designing tailored materials”, and Prof Aicheng Chen (University of Guelph, Canada) on the “Design and electrochemical study of functional nanomaterials for an envisioned hydrogen economy”.

Throughout the conference, KwaMaritane provided its best autumn weather that greeted all our delegates, affording some visitors the opportunity to experience the amazing African wildlife. The bush braai dinner (31 July) as well as the conference gala dinner (1st August) were held at the conference venues. Poster prizes (SACI ties and scarfs) were presented to the winners during the dinner: OC Ozoemena (1st Prize, Tshwane University of Technology), FP Nkosi (2nd prize, Upsalla University) and AK Lebechi (3rd prize, Wits University. The conference was concluded on the 2nd August with a group game drive at the Pilanesberg National Park (Johannesburg).

We sincerely thank all the participants for their excellent scientific contributions and making the ENSTIN 2019 a memorable symposium! We are very grateful to the following for sponsoring the event: National Research Foundation (NRF), Materials for Energy Research Group (MERG) of the University of the Witwatersrand, Linyi Gelon LIB company Ltd (China), SACI, ElectrochemSA, International Society of Electrochemistry (ISE), Hidden Analytical, Princeton Applied Research, and Bruno Steiner Laboratory Consultancy. We sincerely thank the SA Tourism for their support.

Kenneth I Ozoemena
(Conference Chair & Organiser)

Accelerate Sustainable Chemistry

RSC News

  • Royal Society of Chemistry Events Website

Our website can be used to advertise events from across the world – not just those organised by the Royal Society of Chemistry,

So, if you need a simple website for your event, or want to reach a wider audience, then please submit your event to our website.  Simply click on this link and follow the instructions:



  • Newsletters

We have recently launched a new mailing list and, if you have not already done so, you need to take some action to ensure that you still receive updates from the Royal Society of Chemistry and PACN in the future: 

Please share this information across your networks, and through your societies.  We welcome all to the PACN and we want to share our opportunities for training, funding and events with a wide community across Africa and globally.  Help us to reach those who could benefit from our work.

 Dr Helen Driver (nee Bailey) MRSC, Senior Programme Manager, Africa ;;

  • I welcome you to the community:

a.     Join the LinkedIn Group:
b.     Sign up to our newsletter for updates and opportunities:
c.     On twitter, please look up @hvdriver or #PanAfricaChem to find out more.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)
The UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) are looking for experts to join their peer review college for the Global Challenges Research Fund, and I wanted to make sure that the Pan Africa Chemistry Network has the opportunity to apply. Please share this with your networks, and advertise to anyone who may be interested in being part of the decision making process for UK research investment.

Background information here:

Please note – this is not related to the work of FASC, the PACN or the RSC, so please contact UKRI with any questions or queries.

Helen Driver


For the latest news see:


The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) was a joint recipient of the 2019 OPCW–The Hague Award

THE HAGUE, Netherlands —20 November 2019
The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, is pleased to announce the decision of the OPCW-The Hague Award Committee to honour Dr Robert Mikulak (United States of America); Mr Cheng Tang (People’s Republic of China); and the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) as joint recipients of the 2019 OPCW–The Hague Award.

The OPCW-The Hague Award is a legacy of the OPCW receiving the 2013 Nobel Prize for Peace and it recognises individuals and institutions that make an outstanding contribution towards the goals of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC).  The Award was established in 2014 from the monetary prize accompanying the Nobel Prize for Peace and is supplemented by the City of The Hague.

OPCW’s Director-General, H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, congratulated the award recipients and stated: “This year’s three winners have contributed meaningfully to the Chemical Weapons Convention making progress in permanently eliminating chemical weapons while promoting chemistry for peace.“

While Dr Mikulak and Mr Tang have both been extensively involved in the negotiations of the CWC and have collaborated with the OPCW on a broad range of topics, IUPAC has contributed to providing the OPCW with objective scientific knowledge on emerging areas of science related to the CWC, as well as carrying out education and outreach activities to chemistry practitioners and the general public.

The award ceremony happened on 25th November 2019 in The Hague, during the first day of the Twenty-Fourth Conference of the States Parties to the Chemical Weapons Convention. The ceremony was webcasted from the official OPCW website (

The International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) is an international federation of chemists that was established in 1919. Consisting of members, associates, and affiliate institutions from around the world, the organisation played an instrumental role in the development and promotion of The Hague Ethical Guidelines on Chemistry. IUPAC has actively cooperated with the OPCW to produce educational materials, teaching modules and joint-OPCW symposia on CWC related topics. A strong advocate for the peaceful uses of chemistry, IUPAC has provided extensive and longstanding support to the OPCW in promoting the objectives of the CWC.

Mr Cheng Tang (People’s Republic of China) is an expert on chemical demilitarisation. He is currently the Chair of the OPCW Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) and an advisor to the Chinese National Authority (CNA). Involved in the text negotiations of the CWC in Geneva from 1990 to 1992 as well as the removal and destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons, Mr Tang has actively worked for the goal of a world free of chemical weapons.

Dr Robert Mikulak (United States of America) is an eminent expert on chemical and biological weapons arms control and the former Permanent Representative of the United States to the OPCW from 2010 to 2015. Dr Mikulak has made substantial contributions to chemical disarmament through his extensive involvement in the negotiations of the CWC, and his work as the US representative to the OPCW Preparatory Committee. Currently, he is a member of the OPCW Scientific Advisory Board (SAB) and is an expert advisor on chemical and biological weapons issues at the United States Department of State.

As the implementing body for the Chemical Weapons Convention, the OPCW, with its 193 Member States, oversees the global endeavour to permanently eliminate chemical weapons. Since the Convention’s entry into force in 1997, it is the most successful disarmament treaty eliminating an entire class of weapons of mass destruction.

Over 97% of all chemical weapon stockpiles declared by possessor States have been destroyed under OPCW verification. For its extensive efforts in eliminating chemical weapons, the OPCW received the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.

International Younger Chemists Network
We are always eager to connect with new people.  Through your network in South Africa, the young chemists contribution would be incredibly valuable to IYCN if they volunteer their time to serve. Membership to IYCN is informal, we are first and foremost a network of younger chemists (35 and under, or within 5 years of their terminal degree) and we advertise opportunities and tools that will be relevant to that group of people. As we continue to grow and gain momentum, we will also be looking to organize exchanges and provide travel support to conferences. 

We are currently working to expand our network, we hope you can share through your RSA chemical society newsletter about IYCN.  I would also encourage you and the people to check out our website regularly, if we have an event coming up in your area this will be the best way to see it.

Fun Man - on behalf of the IYCN Board
Website: IYCN
Twitter: @IntlYoungerChem
LinkedIn: intlyoungerchemistsnetwork


ABC Chem Conference 2021

This event will be held at the Palais des Congrès –Marrakech, Morocco from 14-18 December 2021.  FASC will be hosting the event.  Please diarise the date.

We are hoping to have an excellent turnout from member countries at this event. More information will be made available in the months ahead.

CAIA Newsletter

The latest issue of CAIA news is available. Go to:
 or e-mail: for pdf files of news and information.

South African Journal of Chemistry

South African Journal of Chemistry Special Edition

"Computer-aided development of sustainable catalysts"

The UK-SA Newton Fund has funded an exciting PhD partnering project for studying sustainable catalytic solutions by computer modelling, led by Professor Nora H. de Leeuw (Cardiff University) and Professor Phuti E. Ngoepe (University of Limpopo). A cohort of PhD exchange students moved between the United Kingdom and several countries in Africa to study the not fully understood chemistry of catalysts, which are required for many topical industrial processes. This team, we would like to invite you to submit a paper to their themed issue on this topic in the international renowned South African Journal of Chemistry. Original research and Review papers are welcome.

Closing Date: 31 December 2019.

The South Journal of Chemistry is now 101 years old and we are pleased to note that the impact factor of the Journal is now 1!.  We encourage all SACI members to submit manuscripts to the Journal.  Journal submission details can be found at

Details of the journal and the editors can be seen at

All manuscripts since 1918 are electronically available online at

This Journal is published electronically.  The webpage is:  The South African Journal of Chemistry, published by the South African Chemical Institute, has been publishing high quality papers, in all fields of Chemistry for 100 years.  The Journal went fully electronic in 2000 and is freely available through open access online (  It is a CAS-abstracted publication and is listed in Current Web Contents.  It is also part of the Scielo group.  It has retained its status as an accredited publication with the South African Department of Higher Education and Training.

We encourage South African chemists to publish in the journal especially in this centenary year!

African Journals of Chemistry

  • African Corrosion Journal (online).  Commenced in 2015 – a peer reviewed corrosion journal. This journal may be of interest to the “practical” chemists amongst the SACI membership.

  • African Journal of Chemical Education       
    Enquiries and manuscripts should be addressed to the Editor-in-Chief: email, PO Box 2305, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. AJCE, 2016, 6(1) ISSN 2227-5835 The online version appears in the FASC website ( and in the AJOL website (

    Papers on any aspect of Chemistry Education such as teaching organic, analytical, physical, inorganic, polymer, green, climate change/environmental chemistry, ICT in chemistry and chemistry curricula as well as assessment in chemistry are acceptable for publication. We also encourage issues on chemistry and indigenous knowledge/practice, chemical safety, natural products and related areas.

  • Nanonews in South Africa   
    SAASTA newsletter. Prof Janice Limon, NPEP Nano News Editor

SACI and SACI related Conference events

ChromSAAMS 2020

  • 26th IUPAC International Conference on Chemistry Education

Other Events

4th International Symposium on Halogen Bonding

NanoAfrica 2020

  • 23rd International Mass Spectrometry Conference (IMSC)

Registrations are now open for the 23rd International Mass Spectrometry Conference (IMSC) 2020 in Rio de Janeiro:

Other Conferences

International Conference on Pure and Applied Chemistry (ICPAC-2020), 6-10 July 2020, Mauritius,

First Commonwealth Chemistry Congress, 18-21 May 2020, The University of the West Indies, Trinidad and Tobago

ACS Research Conference: Chemistry and Chemical Engineering in MENA March 10-12 2020, Doha, Qatar

Chem CYS meeting, 19-21 February, Belgium,

Fourth Symposium on Analytical Chemistry for Sustainable Development (ACSD 2020). March 25-27, 2020, Morocco,