UKZN chief changes star pupil’s fortune

2010-02-17 00:00

UNIVERSITY of KwaZulu-Natal first-year student Vuyani Dlamini (17) passed his matric with flying colours.

But even with securing five distinctions, the future of this Ashdown teen looked bleak — until recently.

UKZN vice-chancellor Malegapuru Makgoba paid Vuyani’s registration fee to study B-Com Accounting out of his own pocket just a few days before lectures were scheduled to start.

However, Vuyani still needs textbooks and money to pay for the rest of his tuition.

He is an orphan and has grown up relying on his grandmother’s pension money, which also supports his unemployed aunt and her two children.

His father, who was a mechanic, died when he was in grade eight. A year later his mother, who worked in a factory in Durban, also died.

“I attended Siya­hlomula High School in Ashdown. Looking at my situation and the situation at home, I decided early that, since I could not contribute money, the only thing I had was education.

“I decided to give it 100% because the way I see it, all the people who have helped me this far are not obligated to. They are just doing me a favour.”

Vuyani learnt his future was in his own hands and when he could not pay the rest of the R150 for his application with the Central Application Office, which is sent to the university of his choice, he did not sit back and blame the government.

He did as he was advised after he could not produce the rest of the money in time. He applied straight to the university.

When he received news that his registration was paid for, he knew that UKZN is exactly where he is supposed to be.

“I have had a difficult life, but I made up my mind that I was going to concentrate on the positive things, which are able to propel me into the future. Hearing about my registration was like God smiling on me. I really count it a blessing that Dr Makgoba would chose me out of so many students.

“I never miss class because I plan to do well. That’s the only way I can secure funding so that I can finish varsity in record time and … take over the responsibility for my younger siblings.

“My dream is giving back to the people who gave selflessly so that I’m where I am today.”

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