Freight Awards a testament to transport industry’s dedication

Freight Awards a testament to transport industry’s dedication

The second Annual South African Freight Awards gala banquet took place recently in Johannesburg. NICCI SCOTT-ANDERSON was there, and she writes that it was a testament to the transport industry’s collective dedication.

On 14 October, a gathering of distinguished guests from across South Africa convened to celebrate a remarkable journey of resilience, determination, and triumph. It was the 2nd Annual South African Freight Awards, a visionary initiative born out of the unwavering commitment of Mary Phadi, president of the Truckers Association South Africa (TASA). With a passion for transformation that knows no bounds, Phadi’s dedication has propelled TASA’s growth from humble beginnings in 2017 to its present strength (the association now has over 350 members).

However, the magic of the South African Freight Awards extends far beyond the confines of TASA’s membership. This prestigious event shines a spotlight on the transport operators who have weathered another year’s operation within our volatile transport sector. These are the emerging transporters from both the freight and passenger sectors who have defied the odds, nurturing resilient and compliant businesses in the face of economic turbulence.

“Our vision is to assist in the continuous quality improvement of operators and qualifying enterprises and suppliers, enabling them to build businesses that last,” explains Phadi. “Through the awards, we have created a curated ecosystem platform, that enables public and private stakeholders to exchange knowledge and best practice.”

Held under the stunning highveld sky, the gala evening carried an air of elegance, grace, and sophistication, with over 160 guests in attendance, including the Minister of Transport, Sindisiwe Chikunga; Minister in the Presidency responsible for Women, Youth, and Persons with Disabilities, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma; CEO of the Cross-Border Road Transport Agency (C-BRTA), Lwazi Mboyi; CEO of the Charlotte Maxeke Institute, Thulasizwe Makhanya; provincial MECs and many other government officials, as well as a delegation from the Democratic Republic of Congo and various captains of the industry.

While all the award winners were truly deserving, the room exploded with applause and joy when young twin sisters from KwaZulu-Natal received the Truck Driver Awards. At just 26 years old, Amanda and Ayanda Ngubane are proud truck drivers who have a significant social medial presence and influence, inspiring both men and women to share in the joy of being a professional truck driver.

The South African Freight Awards were made possible by various partners, including the Department of Transport (DoT), C-BRTA, the Road Accident Fund (RAF), the Road Traffic Infringement Agency (RTIA), the Transport Education and Training Authority (TETA), RailRunner, Tarospace, Commercial Transport Academy (CTA), and various truck operators.

As I reflect on the resounding success of the South African Freight Awards and the incredible journeys of emerging and transformed transport operators, I am reminded of the pivotal role they play in shaping the future of our nation’s transport sector. 

With a call to action, we are reminded that recognition and celebration alone are not enough; we need to foster lasting transformation and ensure the sustained growth and diversification of the sector. We must extend our support to these trailblazers, whether through access to viable business support, capital, mentorship, or policy initiatives that level the playing field.

Let us carry forward the spirit of unity encapsulated in the theme of the South African Freight Awards: “We are in this together.”


Below from left: 1. Mary Phadi with Nkashi Mphahlele, national chairperson of TASA, recipient of the Industry Recognition Special Award, and Minister of Transport Sindisiwe Chikunga. 2. Phadi and Margie Heslop, Industry Recognition Pioneer Award winner, with the Minister responsible for Women, Youth, and People living with Disabilities, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma. 3. Phadi with Industry Recognition Award winner Nondumiso Boya of Mavukane Transport – Commodities.

Lydia MokoenaIndustry Recognition Safety AwardExperience in health, safety, quality, and environment
Queen Lindiwe MbathaIndustry Recognition Trailblazer AwardFormer operator
Margie Heslop Industry Recognition Pioneer AwardFormer operator
Nkashi MphahleleIndustry Recognition Special AwardTransportation of steel
Papama Jonas Industry Recognition Female AwardTransportation of manganese
Johannes Choeu  Industry Recognition Resilience AwardTransportation of petroleum 
Samuel Maphosa Industry Recognition Special AwardTransportation of petroleum 
Tonny Modise Incomer Industry Recognition AwardTransportation of cement
Senzo GumedeAmakhosana Logistics Delivering building material to different construction sites
Simphiwe Mazibuko Arlean and Ayanda TradingDelivering building material to different construction sites
Madoda NgcoboOssebn LogisticsSide tipper trucks delivering sand
Lindile NdimbaImijelo LogisticsTransportation of manganese
Nobuntu MtiOkuhlekodwa LogisticsTransportation of manganese
Maniki RakgalaaneIsigqi Sesizwe LogisticsTransportation of manganese
Thando MagqazaAlunamda Alive Logistics Transportation of manganese
Thenjiwe Vanda Mathedu LogisticsTransportation of manganese
Lesego PhiriMaeto HoldingsTransportation of automotive and cement
Lwando MqaqaKamvalendoda Business Solutions Metal CarriersTransportation of coal
Sunil RamburanTupalele SolutionsTransportation of metal 
Palesa NzimandeKMT TechnologiesAbnormal loads
Kabelo PheehaM. Rams Enterprise (Pty) LtdTransportation of coal
Mpho MulaudziMonoka EnergyFreight forwarding, TLB, and crane trucks
Collins Poulo KgapholaRankhetoa Transport & Construction

Transportation of agricultural and energy products

Mantlibi Catherine RankhetoaMavukane TransportTransportation of agricultural products
Nondumiso BoyaZI Sisters Trading and HoldingsTransportation of different commodities
Irvin Zondi SiweleInvest Wealth LogisticsTransportation of coal
Bradwin ClarkeKamo Jou Trading & ProjectsTransportation of coal
Moloto Nakeng Next City GroupTransportation of different commodities
Phathutshedzo MandiwanaLatonex LogisticsTransportation of different commodities
Percy Makaepea Transportation of different commodities
The Freight Awards also recognised outstanding truck drivers who make truck driving fun and treat the profession as their preferred form of employment:
Ayanda Ngubane Female Truck Driver Award 
Amanda Ngubane Female Truck Driver Award
Teboho Victor Mosia Male Truck Driver Award 

Published by

Nicci Scott-Anderson

Nicci Scott-Anderson is a serial entrepreneur with a special passion for transport and logistics. She is the founder and CEO of the Commercial Transport Academy, which focuses on promoting gender diversity and equity in the South African trucking industry. Additionally, she is the CEO of Zolabix, a SANAS-certified body specialising in RTMS and compliance.
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