South Africa’s former Finance Minister Trevor Andrew Manuel said that accountability must be the watchword if qualitative education must be sustained in the country.
He made this clarion call at a fund-raising event for the Mitchells Plain Bursary and Role Model Trust in Cape Town at the Da Vinci Art Gallery, on Thursday. Manuel is the Founding Patron of the Trust, which provides bursaries to matriculants from Mitchell’s Plain who want to pursue tertiary studies.
“It’s whether we can ensure three levels of accountability in education. It’s a school to the community, it’s the staff to the management, principal in particular, and it’s that interaction between educators and the parents. If we don’t get those things right, then you don’t succeed in education,” Manuel asserted
He also enjoined all parties involved in fostering qualitative education in the country to play their respective roles to ensure excellent results among students.
Mitchells Plain Bursary and Role Model Trust, Cape Town was established in 2010 to raise the hopes of helpless student and support deserving students from the Mitchells Plain area.
The Trust assists with registration and/or tuition fees for studies at tertiary institutions such as Cape Peninsula University of Technology, University of Cape Town, University of Stellenbosch, University of the Western Cape and Further Education and Training (FET) colleges.
Also, the Trust has, since its inception, assisted many young people from Mitchell’s Plain to study at technikons and colleges. In 2015 alone, the Trust awarded more than R1-million in bursaries covering tuition and/or registration fees to 82 matriculants and current students.
Furthermore, Manuel spoke about the vision behind the establishment of the Trust. He said,
“All that we are doing is affording them an opportunity to become agents of change in their own lives and the communities that have spanned them.”
The renowned youth activist has made frantic efforts in putting smiles on the faces of deserving students. He also stressed that South Africa’s youths have immense potential but need a big push of support and encouragement. He added that family circumstances or any other factor should not hinder or rule out South African students from furthering their education.
One of the Trust’s first lucky recipient from Mitchells Plain, Yolande Tshilino, expressed joy for the Trust’s gesture.
“Because of this bursary, I didn’t have to worry or stress until the day that I was preparing for my graduation,” Tshlino said.
Sources from the trust revealed that at least R1 million in bursaries would be awarded this year. Manuel’s bursary is considered to be coming at the right time considering the crisis that have continued to hit most South Africa’ tertiary institutions.
Manuel served as South Africa’s minister of finance from 1996 to 2009, during the leadership of Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki and Kgalema Motlanthe. He was also worked with President Jacob Zuma as a minister in the Presidency for the National Planning Commission from 2009 to 2014.