“I am here today because of the intervention that you have made in my life: I now have a home and have been able to finish my studies – all because of you,” these were the emotional words uttered by Ndabenhle Buthelezi of eMahlabathini – one of 200 bursary holders and interns in the Department of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) who attended an interactive session with MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube at the Senate Chamber, UKZN Westville today.
The words spoken by Ndabenhle were echoed by many other learners and interns whose lives have been transformed by the department’s Internship and Bursary Programmes. KZN Cogta has over last two terms empowered over 1000 bursary holders and interns who are today working in the various sectors of our society which include the private sector and the public service, including local government.
In her address, MEC Dube-Ncube urged bursary holders to make the most of the opportunities they have been given. “Those of you who hold bursaries from Cogta or hold internships at Cogta are being groomed so that you can serve our people when you graduate or when you eventually take up permanent employment. It is an initiative of this government to ensure that all departments nurture their own talent from an early age,” said Dube-Ncube.
“The triple challenges our country is facing are poverty, unemployment and inequality. They can only be overcome if we tap into the talents that many of you possess. As a department, we are tasked with exercising oversight over municipalities in our province. We also provide assistance to municipalities in many areas, such as disaster management, spatial planning, local economic development and financial management,” said Dube-Ncube.
KZN Cogta is proud of its record with interns and bursary holders and both programmes are set to continue.