MEC Lebogang Motlhaping: Opening of Refentse Darrin Serai Recreational Facility

11 Apr 2019

Address by MEC Lebogang Motlhaping at the occasion of the official opening of the Refentse Darrin Serai Recreational Facility, E.R Mocwaledi Primary School – Pampierstad

Head of Department, Mr M. Dichaba
Head of Ministry, Mr K. Mohibidu
District Mayor, W Marekwa
Provincial Commissioner of the SAPS, Mr P. Shivuri
Dept of Education’s District Office Representative, Mr Tebogo Tau
Principal of E.R Mocwaledi, Mr M Mosala
Chairperson of the SGB, Mr L Gasealahwe
Pastor J Sgudla
Government Officials Present
Parents present
Our Honourable guests:  The Learners and Teachers
Ladies and gentlemen,

Today marks a bitter sweet moment as we take time to reminisce on the precious life of Refentse Darrin Serai, whose precious life was lost in a tragic accident.  In an effort to honour his memory, we are paying tribute to his life with a project that lies very close to my heart. 

Ladies and gentlemen, today we honour the memory of a sweet soul.  We realise that the school not only lost a learner and the community a child but his parents and family lost a part of them. 

Today, let us recognise that when one dies, it not only affects the family and the school but the entire community. We may not be able to honour each and every life, but with the least we can do, let us try. 

Let us honour Refentse’s memory by being our brother’s and sister’s keepers. I think the best way to honour a life is to show love while the opportunity still presents itself.  May we remember that when we become each other’s keepers and also honour elders in our communities, our teachers and parents because it is in doing so, we can continue the baton of good practices. 

Learners and teachers, with that said, today we have gathered you all here to unveil the Refentse Darrin Serai Recreational Facilities. We took into consideration what is it we can do to honour his life and also give back to the school and this facility that will not only enhance the school but serve learners, was the perfect way to honour his life. 

Honoured guests, this  project should be a constant reminder to never take a single moment for granted and that you must always choose your parting words wisely as one never knows if it will be the last someone hears. 

To the parents and family of Refentse, this day we sympathise with your loss although we cannot even begin to imagine the depth of your grief but kindly allow us to honour your son and celebrate his life with his peers, at his school.  We hope you can accept this small token of gesture that honours his dear life from the government of the day but also with the aim of sharing this gesture to benefit the school and community, in his memory. 

Our efforts as a Department is to erect a recreational facility at the school with the aim of providing the school with a safe, vibrant and secure area for recreational activities for the learners and give educators peace of mind with the safety of learners in this dedicated area. This will also afford those whose communities do not yet have such facilities a chance to enjoy them in this secure learning environment and to enjoy the space with other learners.   

Ladies and gentlemen, these facilities were made possible by the efforts of De Beers Consolidated Mines. The initiative will  also be a joint venture between our Department responsible for Transport, Safety and Liaison in the Province and other stakeholders such as the Department of Education, Department of Social Development, Liquor Board, Kemoja, teachers and learners. 

I think it goes without saying, that this is in an effort to be applauded and also an indication that greater things can be achieved if we all get involved and move towards making a change in our communities. 

So, let us learn from this opportunity that has been demonstrated today that  we can always make a change were possible and that includes in your lives as learners and in the lives of others. 

Be encouraged and do not look at your background or circumstances and see it as a limit for your and that you will not achieve anything in life but rather be inspired with the possibilities that lie ahead.  Life is what you make of it.

You may not come from the best of backgrounds or from well-off families, however, you have the same opportunity as anyone who comes from a different background than you.  Your access to education gives you a levelled playing field.  It does not matter which school you come from, what matters is the effort you put into rising above the storm and your desire to achieve great things in your life. 

Come to school and use the opportunity to learn, have a vision to become something in life and work hard to achieve it.  Many of us, who have come to visit your school today, do not come from the best of backgrounds, but hard work and utilising the opportunity to get educated got us where we are today, including myself.  So, do not allow excuses to limit your potential to success. 

Ladies and gentlemen, the teacher and parent in me was addressing what I see before. What I see standing before me: are future Doctors, Pharmacists, Business Owners, Engineers, Teachers, Pilots, Quantity Surveyors, Commissioners and the list is endless. 

Learners, see yourself as more than your background because you can become anything you want to become in life.

Leave this YOLO (You Only Live Once) thing alone because it is an execuse to make ill-disciplined and bad decisions with the notion that it could be our last chance.  Unfortunately, the decisions we make today affect our tomorrow so decide wisely because many have found and left fun in this world, it is not going anywhere. Just remember there is a time and place for everything and this is the time to learn and get an education so you can proceed to FET Colleges or Universities.  

Ladies and gentlemen, as I conclude my message, Easter is around the corner and it is more than befitting that I encourage everyone to take extra precaution  on the roads. Most of us will be traveling to visit family or for church gatherings. 

Traffic volumes will increase and will affect us all, so let us all remember the following tips so we can all “Arrive Alive”:  

  • Remember to buckle up, including safely buckling up children
  • Drive within the speed limit
  • Do not drive tired
  • Rest every 200km or hrs
  • Don’t drink and drive or be driven by a drunken driver (this is especially to our young people who are victims of drunken driving accidents.)
  • Obey all the rules of the road

Remember, “Road Safety is Everyone’s Responsibility”,

I thank you.  

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