Call to scrap youth ambassadorsprogramme

2014-01-17 00:00

DA points out the youth ambassadors failed to graduate despite spending millions on training them

THE DA in KZN wants the youth ambassador programme championed by the provincial government to be reviewed.

They said the money spent on training the young people had produced no concrete outcomes.

モThe DA expects the premier to urgently review the programme in its entirety. If it is to be continued and funded by the KZN office of the premier using public funds, the end result needs to offer something a lot more tangible,ヤ the DAメs Sizwe Mchunu said.

He made the statements in response to a parliamentary reply by Premier Senzo Mchunu where he said the participating youths did not graduate from the programme.

モThey, however, use the training provided to them to assist the youth they work with,ヤ he said, adding, モTheir work is modelled along community-based work by conducting awareness campaigns, mobilising communities to partner with government on programmes and establishing youth clubs.ヤ

In his reply, the premier said R8,5?million was spent on the training of youth ambassadors in 2010-11 and 2011-12.

A further R4?million was spent to transport them to the training and another R4,5?million on their meals.

The youth ambassadors, who receive R1?500 in monthly stipends, had undergone training on human trafficking, life orientation and financial literacy, among others.

They were also offered training by the SA National Defence Force, Arts and Culture Department, Aids Foundation and Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Department.

Mchunu said the training was provided on a continuous basis until they left the programme.

モThe youth ambassadors were advised that the training offered will provide them with certain skills that will be useful to them in life,ヤ he said.

But, Sizwe Mchunu said while his party supported the initiative to improve lives of youths, they have serious concerns in its current form.

モThe vast sums of money being spent on training, which is barely existent, are our first concern.ヤ

The DA leader also said while the programme has the potential to spark real employment, it left no real benefits.

モOur province is facing many challenges, particularly in the education, healthcare and housing sectors. There can be no excuse for any programme which does not offer a concrete outcome,ヤ he said.

The province has had 7?703 youth ambassadors since the programme was introduced four years ago.

- Witness Reporter.

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