Who We Are

Liz McDaid

Liz McDaid has a passion for showing people how the world works and how their seemingly insignificant actions can actually make a difference in moving us from our current unsustainable life style towards a just and sustainable life style.

Liz trained as a scientist, also has both a teacher and adult education qualification, and has a Masters in Climate Change and Development from the University of Cape Town. She also teaches a course on eco-justice.

She is an independent environmentalist, and has worked at the energy/ poverty/ community nexus with a focus on participative governance for over 25 years. She is a founder member of the Green Connection. Her recent work includes an energy poverty analysis for Oxfam “you can’t eat electricity”, and a review of the South African renewable energy programme with a focus on community impacts (for the Green Connection). This last is part of the Electricity Governance Initiative, supported by the World Resources Institute.
Liz also works with the Southern African Faith Communities’ Environment Institute, where she heads up their climate and energy programme.


Who We Are

Abdul-Basier Dramat

Basier is responsible for the financial management and provides the business expertise for the Green Connection.

Graduated B.Comm at University of the Western Cape, 1997

Served articles with Shrand & Ekermans Inc. 1998 to 2000

Professional experience

Audit manager and financial advisor at Shrand & Ekermans, 2001 to 2002

Audit manager and economic development consultant at HS Accounting, 2003 to 2004

Registered with South African Institute of Professional Accountants 2002

Own practice “AB Dramat & Associates” 2004

Specialising in accounting, taxation, environmental accounting, economic
development and community based projects

Economic and financial consultant on the Tankwa Karoo project, 2005

Economic and financial consultant on Handbook on River Partnerships

Who We Are

Christy Bragg

Christy’s expertise lies in conservation and biodiversity, community use of resources awareness raising, – Conservation issues, including environmental policy, community involvement in natural resource protection and sustainable use, in-depth knowledge of freshwater resources, terrestrial ecology, and concepts and issues in biodiversity conservation. Christy’s expertise lies in conservation and biodiversity, community use of resources and awareness raising. Conservation issues, including environmental policy, community involvement in natural resource protection and sustainable use, in-depth knowledge of freshwater resources, terrestrial ecology, and concepts and issues in biodiversity conservation

Christy is a Cum Laude graduate of the renowned Masters in Science Conservation Biology degree from the University of Cape Town. She is also studying for her PhD in porcupine ecology and is adept at giving presentations to all sectors of society, and strongly believes in the value of raising awareness.

Christy has worked in various projects involving water use, sustainable development and conservation. She worked as part of NBL Partners to propose alternative ways to develop the local community in the Tankwa Karoo. She has done floral and fauna research in Bushmanland, the Succulent Karoo and Nama-Karoo, and has an extensive knowledge of the local mammals and vegetation of these areas.

Professional experience

Experienced in Researching and Implementing Alternative Livelihood options in disadvantaged communities.
Strong research background and a diverse array of skills in Conservation Biology. environmental education.
Resource economics, social ecology, disturbance ecology, community involvement in conservation, decision analysis, conflict resolution and biodiversity mapping.
Extensive experience in GIS spatial analysis
In-depth knowledge of various software packages, such as ArcView, Statistica, multivariate statistical ordination packages, Microsoft Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and several graphics packages.


Bragg, C.J., Donaldson, J.S. & Ryan, P.G. (2005). Density of Cape porcupines in a semi-arid environment and their impact on soil turnover and related ecosystem processes. Journal of Arid Environments

Bragg C.J., Donaldson, J.S. & Ryan, P.G. (In preparation). Implications of porcupine foraging behaviour in a hotspot of geophyte diversity and endemicity: do geophyte traits influence porcupine diet preference?

Bragg, C.J. & Lovegrove, B.G. (In preparation). Energy use and torpor incidence in the smallest African desert rodent.

Bragg C. Porcupines: Sharp Ecosystem Engineers. Farmers Weekly, 30 January 2004 pp 34-35.

Bragg, C. The prickly pig. Pest or plant promoter. Africa Geographic May 2004 pp 44 – 49.

NBL Partners. 2005. Final Report. Review & pre-feasibility study of projects and proposals to facilitate land reform and empowerment in the Tankwa-karoo region, Western Cape province and Northern Cape provinces, South Africa. Client: Cape Winelands District Municipality.

Who We Are

Leila Mahomed Weideman

Leila currently provides consultancy services to renewable energy investment and development companies.

For 5 years till 2014, Leila was the Director for Development and Operations at Mainstream SA, a renewable energy development company based in Cape Town. Mainstream SA, a joint venture company of Genesis Eco Energy, a South African renewable energy company, and Mainstream Renewable Power located in Ireland was formed in March 2009. Mainstream SA won 6 renewable energy tenders in the first 2 windows of the SA government’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers Programme, making it the most successful company in the programme in 2011-2013.

Leila has worked in the energy sector since 1998. Prior to joining Genesis Eco-Energy and Mainstream SA she was an independent sustainable energy policy specialist and preceding that the Managing Director of Sustainable Energy Africa, a leading energy NGO in South Africa. Leila has a long association with NGOs, volunteer and activist groups in the environment and energy sector and has a passion for building capacity in people and organisations in the fields of sustainable development. Previous to her work in energy Leila worked for research organizations, local governments and consultancies in the land, environment and development field. Leila studied environmental science, development studies and energy studies and was a Director of both Genesis Eco Energy and of Mainstream SA. Leila sat on the board of The South African Wind Energy Association, Sustainable Energy Africa, the Environmental Monitoring Group and the Sustainable Energy and Climate Change Partnership and The Cape Town Partnership.

Who We Are

Glyn Wililiams B.A. LL.B (UCT)

Glyn is the senior partner at Chennells Albertyn Attorneys, Notaries and Conveyancers.  As a commercial and litigation attorney he specializes in inter alia environmental law. His clients have included the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA) and a number of environmental action groups. Glyn is based in Cape Town and Stellenbosch.

Who We Are

Yachika Reddy

Yachika has an MSc in Energy Studies from the University of Cape Town. She is currently employed at Sustainable Energy Africa (SEA) as Project Manager of the SEED Programme and involved in a number of exciting projects.   During her 6 years of employment at SEA, Yachika has worked across a spectrum of projects focused on rooting sustainable energy approaches and practices in urban development planning and management processes across South Africa.

Whilst studying for her Masters degree at the Energy Research Centre (University of Cape Town), Yachika was employed as a research assistant participating in energy research as it relates to poverty reduction and climate change. One of the projects in which she was principally involved, entailed an in-depth analysis of energy transitions in fuel use that occur among low-income households in South Africa. This culminated in a research paper which she co-presented with her supervisor at the Energy Transitions Workshop held jointly by Stanford University (CA, USA) and the University of Cape Town in 2004. Prior to her Masters degree, she worked in the field of Information Systems in software development; creating, designing and developing information systems for corporates in South Africa. Soon after completing her Honours degree in Environmental and Geographical Science, she worked in the United Kingdom for 2 years as a research assistant at the Wildlife Conservation Research Unit (WILDCRU), Oxford University as well as the Haematology Unit, and Guys Hospital in London primarily involved in analysing statistical data related to research in the respective fields.

Who We Are

Penny Hlakula

Penny joined the Green Connection on the 01 November 2007. She assumes responsibility for the overall management of the administrative functions of the Green Connection office and logistics management for our projects. and regularly updates the website. She is quite a  capable achiever when it comes to meeting the goals she sets for herself in doing her work.

Professional Experience
Penny has a strong background and years of experience working with NGOs. She has developed and advanced her skills in computer literacy, research, community leadership and organisational development, office administration, events organising and print-media. Another interesting part of her work history includes working with youth as a community organiser for environmental awareness, HIV/AIDS and  socio-economic issues, as well as hosting a youth radio show.