uMfolozi Municipality Mayor Cllr Smanga Mgenge, learners and teachers were filled with joy when Communications Minister Faith Muthambi handed over 10 bicycles to the learners of Ntongande High School on Wednesday, 11 January 2017, the first day of 2017 school year, as part of her Back to School Campaign.
The learners who reside in rural uMfolozi use to travel more than 15km every day just to get to school and the same strenuous distance back home. Minister Muthambi said the long travel is now a thing of the past for the learners. “Our view is that the bicycles will lead to increased academic performance at the school and we also hope that it will lower the rate of absenteeism. The bicycles are intended to assist destitute students, who are in a desperate situation to get education and we are doing this because we are a caring government,” said Minister Muthambi.
Minister Muthambi is also believes that the bicycles will promote cycling amongst the previously disadvantaged communities as certain sporting codes, like wrestling, cycling and rugby, were regarded to be played mainly in predominantly white communities.
The Minister also engaged the school’s management to identify critical needs for speedy intervention. She will also use the campaign for the promotion of the right to educate children and the role of parents in providing support as well as strengthening the education system.
uMfolozi Mayor Smanga Mgenge thanked Minister Muthambi as well the MTN Foundation for the donations of the10 bicycles together with Compujector, school shoes for learners as well as back packs for educators. Mayor Mgenge also urged the learners, especially the new matric class of 2017 to work hard and dedicate themselves towards they school books. “The municipality is always willing to help deserving learners who have shown true commitment to their studies, we cannot help you if you do not meet us half way,” Mayor Mgenge told the learners.
UMfolozi Municipality Mayor Cllr Smangaliso Mgenge, Minister of Communications Faith Muthambi and uMfolozi Municipality Speaker Cllr Dan Mfusi happily presenting a Ntongande High School learner with a bike to travel to and from school with.
Learners of Ntongande High School attentively listening to government and municipal stakeholders as Communications Minister Faith Muthambi handed over bicycles and school supplies.