Address by the Executive Chairperson of the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), Mr Sifiso Mtsweni at Tweeling, Free State Province, during the NYDA Fezile Dabi District Office Launch
Premier of Free State, Imboko Mme Sisi Notombela
Mayor of Mafube Municipality, Cllr Jabulani Sigasa;
Cllr Sonto Motaung;
Executive Directors of the NYDA,
Ms Buyisiwe Khoza, Director of the Inqaba Yokulinda Youth Organization;
Mr Doctor Mochana;
Ladies and gentlemen,
Members of the Media,
Today is yet another important day as we register another milestone as part of the National Youth Development Agency’s (NYDA) Board strategic direction and focus.
The NYDA Board had in response to the many cries of young people about the accessibility of the NYDA, resolved to broaden its footprint by ensuring that it expands its reach. This meant that the NYDA must exist across all 52 districts in the country.
We are delighted that we gather for the official launch of the NYDA Fezile Dabi District Office. A model that we have successfully implemented a few months ago in Groblersdal, Ladysmith and Tzaneen.
Honourable Premier, the NYDA declared 2018 as the year to fight youth unemployment. We further took a decision that in response to the issues of youth unemployment, we must establish the NYDA Jobs Fund and Skills Fund. We can report that as part of our plans these funds are well on course. This is against a backdrop of increasing youth unemployment, poverty and inequality. It is our belief that as we expand our reach, we will be offering the best of service to the youth particularly with the objective of entrenching an entrepreneurial mindset, for we believe that creation of entrepreneurs will lead to more job creation. South Africa’s has a low Total Early-Stage Entrepreneurial Activity (TEA) standing 11,4% which increased by 6,9% since 2016. We believe that we are on the right path to creating ore job creators as opposed to job seekers.
We cannot underscore the importance of education as an important asset for our county in general and youth in particular. It is in this context that when we realised as the NYDA that youth unemployment stands at a staggering 52,5% with a 28% graduate unemployment. This cannot be a normal situation. Thus the NYDA spearheaded the call for the scrapping of experience as an entry requirement for all entry-level jobs in both the public and the private sector. A declaration has been made by the government that as of 2019 experience will be scrapped. A victory for the YOUTH of our motherland.
We further welcome the launch of the e-Recruitment system in the public service as part of a wide government process to make it simpler and easier for people, especially the youth, to apply for job opportunities in the public service. According to the Ministry of Public Service, “ the e-Recruitment system or applications through the digital Z83 system is currently being phased-in, beginning with the national Departments of Labor; Higher Education and Training; Office of the Public Service Commission, Public Service and Administration, National School of Government and the Centre for Public Service Innovation, with the process expected to be completed by 31 March 2019. The roll-out the system to the rest of the Public Service effective from 1 April 2019.”
Indeed this is a clear indication of a digital age and a move towards the fourth industrial revolution. Like many other offices of the NYDA, the Fezi Dabi District Office, known as the Tweeling Service Centre will enable young people to access free Wi-Fi and internet services in order to apply for opportunities that exist in the public and private sector. Young people from across the Fezile Dabi District will have access to products and services offered by the NYDA and benefit meaningfully from various developmental interventions relating to skills development, economic development, and national youth service. We are hopeful that through our EDP programme young aspiring entrepreneurs will access relevant skills, values, attitudes and knowledge to develop and create own business. It is our belief that we will hear more beneficiaries stories in the area of Mafube Municipality and other areas in the district.
Programme Director; let me take this opportunity to send gratitude on behalf of the Agency Board to the Office of the Premier for continuous support to the NYDA. It is humbling to witness how youth development is at the centre of economic growth and development of the Free State Province. Let me also thank the Mafube Local Municipality, Inqaba Yokulinda Youth Organization, and other stakeholders for ensuring that we have this launch. Youth Development is EVERYONE’S BUSINESS and the only way to achieve maximum results in creating the future of our country is through partnerships.
It is also important to mention that we are finalising Lejweleputswa Service Centre and Xhariep, where a Memorandum of Understanding has been signed. It is our desire to launch service centres across all districts of the Free State Province by end of financial year. We hope that young people will take full advantage of this centre.
I take this opportunity to also wish you a happy Christmas and a prosperous new year. I extend our good luck wishes to the matric class of 2018. To all young people this festive season, let us all be responsible, buckle-up, do not speed and do not drink and drive. Fika Uphephile!