Appeal for youth development

2018-03-01 06:00

KOUGA Executive Mayor ELza van Lingen has called on business to develop mentorship programmes to help shape young talent in the region.

In her State of the Municipality Address yesterday the Mayor thanked the local business sector for their support over the past year.

“By working with business, we were able to do more for our communities and we look forward to building on these successes.

“The municipality will, in return, accelerate its efforts to grow local business, the economy and jobs,” she said.

She said skills development programmes, especially for the youth, would be among the municipality’s focus areas.

“Thirty-six learnerships have already been lined up this year in Electrical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Archives and Records Management, Human Resource Management and Public Administration.”

She further encouraged local businesses to register as service providers with the municipality.

“Increasing how much business we do locally is important and we would like to encourage local businesses to register as service providers with the municipality, so as to enable us to do business with you.

“The good news is that many businesses that stopped doing business with the municipality years ago because they were not being paid, have started re-registering on the database, a clear sign that confidence is being restored in our municipality.”

She said one of the big economic shocks for Kouga the past year had been the news that the proposed nuclear development at Thyspunt would not be happening soon, if ever.

“Fortunately, there has always been far more to Kouga than just Thyspunt. There is tremendous room for growth in many sectors - be it Tourism, Agri-processing or the Ocean Economy – and, as a Council, we will endeavour to unlock the full economic potential of our area.”

She said Kouga also recently established a three-year partnership with the Canadian municipality of Prince Edward County, specifically aimed at identifying and driving sustainable local economic development initiatives in our region.

A delegation from the municipality will be visiting Kouga in March to take the partnership forward.

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