Zulu 'flipping angry' at youths who waste opportunities

2016-06-02 10:28
Minister of Small Business Development Lindiwe Zulu. (Supplied)

Minister of Small Business Development Lindiwe Zulu. (Supplied)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - When she heard that a group of South African medical students studying in Cuba had started spending more time in church than in class, Small Business Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu said she was very angry.

As a youngster, she was given the opportunity to study abroad through the ANC's relationships with other countries, and had learnt more than she would have if she had stayed at home. She had hoped the students would be more appreciative.

"I am a product of the ANC sending me to Russia to study. I spent six-and-a-half years. I did my journalism and I came back with a masters degree in journalism," she told dozens of young people at Walter Sisulu Square in Kliptown, Soweto.

She was speaking at an ANCYL event to mark the start of youth month and to commemorate the June 16, 1976 Soweto uprising's 40th anniversary.

"I speak Russian, I speak French, I speak kiSwahili. I didn't learn them just from sitting here at home, I learnt it because the African National Congress gave me an opportunity.

"That is why I was so flipping angry when I heard about what the students were doing in Cuba," she said.

In January, KwaZulu-Natal Health MEC Sibongiseni Dhlomo and a delegation of government officials visited Cuba after learning that 150 students in Havana were spending up to seven hours a day, seven days a week, on church activities, rather than their medical studies.

'South Africans are too inward thinking'

Dhlomo said at the time that he had met Cuban officials and the managements of the universities where the South Africans were studying. Currently, 3 000 medical students were pursuing medical qualifications in Cuba, Dhlomo said.

He said the department had no problem with students taking part in religious activities, but it should not interfere with their reason for being in the country.

The students had used their stipends to fly in a pastor from Pietermaritzburg.

On Wednesday, Zulu said the students regretted their actions. She said young South Africans needed to learn that government was there to create the conditions to help them, but that the rest was up to them.

"You either get it happening for yourselves, or you don't. Government will create the necessary conditions for you to do that and I have said to you, it is not possible for us to cover everybody."

She urged young South Africans to explore outside the country and learn new languages and cultures.

"South Africans are too inward thinking, they don't want to go out there. They are afraid of even just stepping out of South Africa itself.

"I have been around the whole world, and whether I am in London or Italy or in Paris, I come across students from the African continent, hustling. I doubt that many of us want to go out there and hustle, so the one who has the opportunity for the students to go out gives them the opportunity to do that," Zulu said.

Deputy Higher Education Minister Mduduzi Manana, who also addressed the event, said there was a lack of awareness from youngsters about opportunities to study abroad.

China had committed 2 000 scholarships to the South African government, but they were not being taken up, perhaps because people did not know about them.

He said the Cuba matter had "almost tarnished" South Africa's relationship with that country. Extra precautions were now being taken when selecting students to study abroad.

Read more on:    anc  |  lindiwe zulu  |  johannesburg

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

PARTNER CONTENT
WATCH: How education can change a life

A university education gives students the chance to create a better future for themselves, their families and to opportunity achieve their dreams.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.