Byline: Nonjabuliso Nhlambo

11 July 2022

Govan Mbeki Municipality held a two day youth summit at Lillian Ngoyi hall in Secunda from 29 June to 30 June 2022 under the theme Govan Mbeki Youth Creating Opportunities Under the New Normal.

The purpose of the event was to readdress poverty, unemployment and inequality within Govan Mbeki local Municipality.

The gathering was also to guide the youth through the doors they need to access combat unemployment, also have an intake on what the youth wants to see happening within the communities.

Companies such as NYDA, Blue mining, Gert Sibande TVET College, overlook Colliery took part in the initiative through presentations by each stakeholder on opportunities they can offer to the Youth.

This comes after the rise in unemployment in the country and during the summit a youth council was formed to work with the youth in Govan Mbeki municipality.

‘’We agreed to have a youth summit after seeing the high crisis of unemployment so that the youth can tell us what they want to see this year or the next coming years.

The expectation of the youth council is for them to make sure that young people in our municipality are employable, which we will be able to create a fatal ground for the in the fighting of poverty,’’ said the Executive Mayor Cllr Nhlakanipho Zuma in his address of the purpose of the summit.

Vusi Zwane from overlook colliery delivering a presentation at the event

From Overlook Colliery Vusi Zwane made a presentation where he shared career opportunities available in the mining sector for the youth.

Bursaries and learnerships which are awarded to the youth around.

In his presentation he encouraged the youth in completing trade tests in order to qualify for learnerships.

Zwane further mentioned that they are spreading allover Govan Mbeki and there a number of beneficiaries within the local municipality.

The situation got tense when majority of the youth in the summit had no knowledge as to what “Overlook” is about or rather what they stand for in these communities.

One youth member who is from ward 15 at Bethal alleged that he resides in a farm front opposite the Overlook Colliery yet the youth around that area are suffering.

The young man who did not disclosed his identity alleged that after multiple encounters with the mine seeking employment with no luck he opted to open a car wash at the farm where he went back to ask for demolished bricks only to be given an email that was not functional several times. He further alleged that the mine damaged a water supply pipe at the farm.

Cllr Bethuel Zunguza discouraged Overlook as to why they are copying programs that are already given by the municipality and in his comment he challenged Overlook to bring all the beneficiaries to such events so that it is evident that they are indeed working towards uplifting local youth.

The event was graced by the presence of Deputy Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs CoGTA Thembi Nkadimeng.

Deputy Minister of CoGTA Thembi Nkadimeng addressing the youth

Minister encouraged the executive Mayer to have a bursary scheme for young people as she says she wants to see the youth uplifted in her key note address.

In her address she discouraged Cllr Nhlakanipho Zuma into turning Govan Mbeki municipality to a model city or rather into a metro because economy is not growing instead there’s a decline.

Nkadimeng further encouraged the municipality to nurture arts and culture as it is what takes away an African child from the street, to let them generate their energy in a positive way.

‘’We have got to make a life for ourselves meaningful,’’Nkadimeng said in closing.

Attendees at the youth summit