In the pursuit of academic excellence, Newcastle Mayor Cllr Dr Ntuthuko Mahlaba is determined to bring education to the forefront and seeing the youth flourish.
One youngster set to flourish this year is Lindokuhle Mlangeni, whose dream of owning a brand-new state-of-the-art laptop and a printer has come true, thanks to Newcastle Mayor Cllr. Dr Ntuthuko Mahlaba.
Mlangeni, a student from the University of South Africa (UNISA), says her ambitions to excel academically led her to seek assistance from the Office of the Mayor last year.
Determined to see Mlangeni excel, the mayor acted and together with the Director of Information Technology (I.T), approached Idol Consulting to sponsor Mlangeni.
The budding academic was overwhelmed with emotions when the mayor finally handed her a brand-new laptop and printer.
“Most of my university modules need a laptop, but unfortunately I could not afford one and I had exhausted all my options. I was at the verge of despair; until I approached the mayor for help,” remarked Mlangeni, who is thrilled and overwhelmed that the mayor has come to her rescue.
Mayor Cllr. Dr Ntuthuko Mahlaba wished Mlangeni well in her studies. However, he pleaded with her to spread similar acts of kindness, once she completes her studies.
“We are one municipality that does not compromise when it comes to education. If it’s within our powers, we will never shy away from assisting anyone who has a genuine thirst for learning. Former president Nelson Mandela once said that ‘education is the most powerful weapon which one can use to change the world’. We want to emulate the former statesman and cultivate the culture of learning in our community. I would also like to thank Idol Consulting for partnering with us and helping Mlangeni realise her dream,” said Dr Mahlaba.
Following the handout on Tuesday, January 14, the Newcastle municipality hosted a meeting for education specialists from the Amajuba District, Department of Education stakeholders, mayors from the district and traditional leaders.
The high-level meeting resolved to adopt new strategies to further improve the matric pass rate for the Amajuba District.
The district achieved an overall pass rate of 85.2%, placing it second in the province after Ugu District, which only achieved 86.3%.
Furthermore, the delegates took a resolution to work closely with parents, members of the community, within the respective municipalities in a bid to eliminate absenteeism in schools.
The district also resolved to set a goal of achieving a matric pass rate above the ninety per cent mark. The ambitious task was applauded by the mayor, who committed himself to ensure the municipality rallies behind such an initiative.
Dr Mahlaba further announced that his office would double this year’s education assistance fund for academically deserving students.
“Newcastle has a long history and tradition of producing some of the country’s finest minds. We do not want to lose sight of this tradition but want to add to this legacy. We are grateful to the parents and teachers from our district for pushing their children to the pinnacle. As a municipality, we will fully support any program that will add educational value to the lives of our learners. I would like to encourage learners to apply for the mayor’s study assistance funding,” said Dr Mahlaba.
Dr Mahlaba wishes all learners well, as the new schooling calendar commences tomorrow, January 15.