The Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons of Southern Africa
2017 Presidential welcome
It is indeed my great pleasure and honour to welcome all of you, to this, our annual Congress of the Association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons of South Africa. More importantly, I am indeed pleased that so many of you have made the journey to Gauteng (The Place of Gold ) and in particular, to Johannesburg, the New York of Africa ! Johannesburg is an African city of note, the largest city in South Africa (also the wealthiest) and without doubt, the economic powerhouse of Africa.
To the first time visitor, Johannesburg, or Jozi as it’s more commonly known can be a little daunting, but once bitten by the vibe and energy of this city that never sleeps, you’re going to want to come back. Crime is in no uncertain terms part of the fabric of South Africa, but to live with a constant awareness, gives it form and credibility, thus nurturing a very resilient, resourceful and streetwise nation of Proud South Africans, who flourish anywhere in the world. Evidence of this is in that if you look at many of the top Plastic Surgical Units in the world, 80% would have had, at any one time, a South African Surgeon on board.
In these troubled times of political, economic and academic turmoil, my sense is one of quiet confidence and satisfaction, that our Speciality and Association is stronger than it has ever been. We have maintained and indeed elevated our standards in Plastic Surgery, whilst other specialities seem to have been flagging. This is by no small measure the result of unfailing faith and tremendous hard work and effort put in by the Departments of the various teaching institutions around the country, the Educational Subcommittee and the Executive Committee of the Association.
We are very fortunate this year to have three invited international guest speakers who will be sharing a spectrum of knowledge and experience over a broad range of both reconstructive and aesthetic surgical topics. In addition, I am particularly excited by the participation of our own local experts as well as the Residents making for a full and complete educational program.
I would like to extend my sincerest thanks and gratitude to the Congress Organizing Committee, in particular Dr Vivien Jandera and Mrs Candice Penfold for their tireless effort and commitment to making this such a special and memorable event, notwithstanding the role played by Professor Ndobe and his team from the WITS Plastic Surgery Department in assisting with the Scientific Program and hosting of this year’s Congress.
Finally, an event like this certainly cannot be staged without the ongoing support of the exhibitors and the trade. Your participation is deeply appreciated and we look forward to our usual congenial interactions with all of you.
I wish you a memorable and fruitful stay in Johannesburg. I look forward to meeting you all again, and let’s use this time to renew old friendships and establish new ones.
Thanking you in anticipation
DR CHRIS SNIJMAN
“ The craftsman does not always build toward a prior vision. Often images come in the process of working. The material, his hands – together they beget “
– M.C. Richards