Byline: Andani Matumba

Friday, 24 March 2023

Debaters from Thomas Nhlabathi Secondary School came out victorious during the Speakers’ Schools Debate Competition for 2023 which was hosted by the Speaker of Council at Govan Mbeki Municipality, Cllr Fikile Magagamela at Lilian Ngoyi Center in Secunda on Thursday, 23 March 2023.

Although the time given for the teams to prepare their topics was little, teams still presented strong and well-rounded arguments in their debates, engaged well with the other teams and were consistent throughout the competition and, as a result, they were pronounced the winners.

In second place was Highveld Park High School, which fought very hard during the debate with well researched facts and references, followed by learners from KI Kwala, who showed strength through their well spoken manner and blowing punches at the opponents, forcing them to raise a POI’s.

The following five schools participated in the competition; Highveld Park Secondary School; Thomas Nhlabathi Secondary School; KI Thwala Secondary School; Sizwakhele Secondary School; and Ikhethelo Secondary School.

2nd place winners of the debate, learners from Highveld Park High School in Secunda together with the Speaker of Council at GMM

The opening of the debate and welcoming of guests was done by the Executive Mayor, Cllr Nhlakanipho Zuma, who then apologised that he would not be part of the learning and educational event due to other municipal commitments.

The main purpose of the debate is to plant seeds of education, wisdom and knowledge for the future generation.

According to the host, Cllr Magagamela, the main purpose of the event is to sharpen, uplift and groom young people into steering Govan Mbeki to the direction of the Modern City of Excellence.

Topics were given to the learners during the session on issues that affect them in their communities and each team only had 15 minutes to prepare.

Topics such as Affirmative Action should be abolished in South Africa, Governments should provide, The universal basic income for everyone, Free education in South Africa must be instituted at all levels, the Fourth Industrial Revolution is the end of civilisation, Just Transition of Energy Sector for South Africa is the answer to loadshedding, Humans have asphyxiated earth, causing global warming and is marriage institution relevant nowadays were debated on.

This initiative was done in preparation for the Junior Mock Council which will be hosted by the speakers in June 2023 with the aim of grooming and shaping future leaders, with Busisiwe Mashilwane crowned the best speaker of the debate speakers cup and will play the role of Mayor during the mock council, Sibusiso Nkosi will take the role of the Speaker and Surprise Mlambo as the Chief Whip.