Labour of love: NMU honours Bay law expert

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Port Elizabeth is his home, but the world is advocate Luvuyo Bono’s playground.And while he has achieved numerous accolades in his life, his most recent milestone came when Nelson Mandela University bestowed upon him the title of adjunct professor.A nationally recognised expert in the labour law field, Bono said the key to his success was finding a niche market and working tirelessly to stay ahead of the pack.Along with Labour Court judge Zolashe Lallie, Bono was involved in the initial process of starting up the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA).He was also one of the first commissioners trained in SA.According to NMU labour law academic Prof Adriaan van der Walt, the title of adjunct professor is given to those who excel in their given field.“Luvuyo excels in labour law. He was granted the title by the university for his contribution to the field.“He was nominated by the faculty of law – the university accepted the nomination and granted him the title within the last month.”Van der Walt said he had met Bono when he was just starting his career and a student of then Vista University in Port Elizabeth.Bono obtained his B Juris from Vista in 1994 and his LLB in 1999. He then completed his LLM in labour law in 2001 at NMU and is now doing his doctorate in labour law there.“I met him as a young man. He is remarkably intelligent, hardworking and committed.“He’s a wonderfully loyal friend and because of his nature he is incredibly connected.“He has really become a national figure,” Van der Walt said.Bono is chair of the Essential Services Committee (ESC) of the minister of labour, chair of the Education Labour Relations Council, chair of the board of trustees of the Independent Mediation Services of the Eastern Cape and a panelist for the Public Health and Social Development Sectoral Bargaining Council, to name just a few of his associations.Some years ago, Bono was also a passionate ballroom dancer, and in 1989 he won the SA championships.Now, outside of labour law, he says he is a movie and car fanatic. But his current passion project is his company, LUV Information Systems, which specialises in digitising workplace relations.The company renders labour relations services through a digital platform, revolutionising these services in the era of the fourth industrial revolution.“Technology is changing a lot of things in our lives and how we do things, and it’s having a big impact on workplaces.“I always say to students that they can succeed at anything, but you just need to be ahead of the pack.“I consider myself as one of the first few people digitising labour relations, so I always try to find niche markets.“I am proudly a PE black professional, who has really made a name for himself.“But these days I mostly focus on international labour relations – this week I will be speaking at a conference in Mauritius, so to a certain extent you could say I have outgrown the local scene.“I must say that I would like to see a number of young black lawyers following suit.”Both Bono and Van der Walt are headed to the Labour Law Conference in Mauritius this week to participate in discussions and engage on issues related to effective labour dispute prevention, labour dispute resolution and contemporary substantive-law issues.

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