Millions of young people in South Africa do not have formal education or any form of training that could assist them in securing an employment. A report was released by Statistics SA in the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS), stating that just over an approximated 8 million out of 20.4 million youth in South Africa are without a job. The youth unemployment rate is only expected to rise henceforth due to the lockdown if the government does inject more money to agencies like the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) that tries to curb the rate from rising.

 The pandemic of COVID-19 has encumbered economic development and prospects aimed to improve the lives of young citizens in South Africa. NYDA CEO, Waseem Carrim told Madibaz Radio on the COVID-19 report that they have been tasked by the government to offer relief funds to youth of South Africa during the pandemic and lockdown. This forms part of the development of the youth intervention plan that was announced by the President, Cyril Ramaphosa during the State of the Nation Address (SONA). This comprehensive intervention plan includes paid internships, opening of space that offers young people working experience and agile skills development. “the government has been trying to assist the youth of South Africa in many ways, one recent way was when they offered a special grant to the unemployed,” Carrim said.

The NYDA has a limited budget that they can spend to help young people and that is a backfoot as the budget cannot stretch to the lengths where all expectations of the youth will be met. When a relief fund was established by the agency, almost eight thousand of applications were received and only one thousand could be assisted. However, the NYDA still remain relevant and committed to assist the youth by running a handful of initiatives to meet the youth halfway such as assisting the youth in applying for the relief fund.

The NYDA CEO says that the COVID-19 pandemic has in the same breath helped the agency and the government set foot towards a positive path as far as the youth is concerned, “as much as the COVID-19 comes with its own challenges it also gives us a reason to be hopeful for the future.”

Waseem Carrim encourages the youth to be more active and entrepreneurial in their communities as employment in South Africa will remain an issue for some time and mostly affecting them.

By Ashley Malepe


Madibaz graduates driven to balance sport and studies

Drive, old-school discipline and time-management skills are shared traits of the latest crop of Madibaz Sport graduates.

That – along with support from their families, friends, lecturers and coaches at Nelson Mandela University – have seen these student-athletes excel in their chosen fields.

Rugby scrumhalf Dundre Maritz, who graduated with an honours (cum laude) degree in economics, believed an unwavering commitment across the board had been his key to success.

“My mantra was what my father always told me to do – ‘to show up’,” said the 24-year-old, who had been a key figure in Madibaz gaining promotion to the Varsity Cup.

“Every day you need to show up in terms of work ethic, commitment, loyalty and determination.

“Looking back to matric, I probably should have been the last person to make it to where I am today. But I made a choice to rebuke mediocrity.”

From the onset, Maritz associated himself with individuals from various spheres who could help with his progress.

“They have played a massive role in my development as a student and athlete. I always had and still have access to valuable expertise and wisdom that you simply cannot buy.”

Supporting his sense of commitment was netball player Lindokuhle Manyisa, who sported a diploma in civil engineering.

“It is all about having discipline,” she said. “I had to pitch up for every practice and game, while keeping up with my academics.

“My coach, who rooted for us to do well academically, also motivated me.”

She said her teammates were brilliant on court and in the classroom, which made her believe that she could do it too.

Her message was to be as dedicated in your academics as you were in your sport.

“It’s not easy, but it’s possible.”

Alex Penhall, who is busy with his honours in psychology, said it was important to absorb the holistic experience of varsity life.

“I would say students must enjoy every second they get because time goes by so fast,” said the hockey star who believed discipline on and off the field was key.

“Manage your programme well and know when it is time to have fun and when it is time for work.”

Penhall said the Madibaz management team lent plenty of support, especially when it came to handling the inevitable injuries.

“There was always patience and understanding and that, combined with my passion for the game and will to succeed, drove me.”

Hannah Werth, a BSc graduate and top water polo player, emphasised the importance of always delivering her best, a quality that netted her academic and sports bursaries.

“The sports bursary was a great help, but to reach your full potential you have to give absolutely everything in all aspects,” she said, pointing to the fact that the sports aid motivated her to study hard, which led to the academic bursary.

She also spoke about finding the right balance.

“There is a time to work and a time to train, but importantly, there is a time to rest and have fun.

“Don’t be too hard on yourself. Don’t add to that pressure.”

By his own admission, soccer player Kaashif Jassen faced tough academic times, but the support structure in his personal life and at the varsity was instrumental in him graduating with a degree in human movement science.

“I was challenged in my academics – a lot,” he recalled. “I think my peers and lecturers can testify to that. But their support was critical.

“Also, my friends have been crucial to my growth and successes. It is very important to have people around you who not only make you happy, but push and motivate you.”

Volleyball ace Bogolo Moloisi, now with an advanced diploma in business studies behind her name, said the backing she had received on the academic front was essential to her growth as a player.

“The biggest thing was the letter [of permission] when you needed to go away for games. I am so thankful that I had such supportive lecturers, because I know that there are some who reject those letters.”

She also emphasised the importance of time management.

“Balancing academics and sports is not easy. On one side you need to get that qualification, but there is also this sport you are so passionate about.

“The fact that I had the same load of work as other students was hard. I just developed my time management skills and learned to prioritise.”

Commitment was non-negotiable, said Moloisi.

“It is not easy, but nothing that is worth anything ever is. There will be hard times but as long as you have the desire you will find a way to make it all worth it.”

Sprinter Aidan Tuohy, who graduated with a sports management degree, emphasised the importance of a support structure and the role his parents and coach had played in helping him balance the workload associated with sport and academics.

“My parents would motivate me before every race and they were always proud of me no matter where I came. They just knew how to take the pressure off,” he said.

“It was the same with the Madibaz coaching staff, who helped me to work on my weak points. They also understood the importance of studying, allowing us to re-schedule training when there were academic commitments.”

Tuohy is also a proponent of proper planning.

“You have to stick to a timetable to balance academics and sport, because if you don’t, your marks will slip and you may under-perform in competitions.”

He enjoyed meeting new people, but emphasised the importance of controlling your lifestyle.

“Go out and socialise, but you must learn to balance social and athletics life and never forget your priorities in order to meet your goals.”

Academics a top priority for Madibaz student-athletes

Student-athletes should make their studies a priority and maintain good fitness levels while staying safe, say Madibaz Sport managers and coaches.

This is the immediate objective for Nelson Mandela University staff and students as they continue to comply with government and university regulations during the national 21-day lockdown because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The lockdown is due to end on April 16 and the managers want student-athletes to be ready for what is hopefully a return to normal life.

Madibaz Sport hockey manager Cheslyn Gie said the situation would have a big impact on the students, but that their academic programme should be the main priority.

“When they return they will have to catch up on all the lost time with regards to lectures and tests,” he said. “Our primary goal will be to assist them with their studies first, so our hockey will be a secondary concern.

“I am also hoping that all our students return in good health.”

As per national and provincial guidelines Gie said the start of the hockey season had been postponed and they would await further direction from the national body.

Madibaz water polo coach Jono Watkins said the lockdown was a period which student-athletes could use wisely to plan and prepare for when it was lifted.

“It’s essential for students to be well rounded in their academics and sports,” he said.

“I feel it’s important that our water polo players aren’t put under additional stress as they’re already anxious about their studies.

“No extra training sets have been submitted to players in this tough time and expectations placed on players to perform at the highest level in the country will be our coaches’ responsibility when practices resume.

“Fortunately all the players understand the importance of living a healthy lifestyle and we’re confident our students will be healthy and relatively fit after lockdown.”

While acknowledging the priority of academics, managers are also urging student-athletes to keep safe while maintaining a level of fitness that will enable them to move seamlessly into their sporting schedules when the programmes resume.

Netball coach Lana Krige said it was an opportunity for players to work on certain areas of their games.

“We have made some plans and adapted some skills training and fitness goals to suit the confinement we are in,” she said.

“The girls will not be able to do their shooting sessions, but fitness and strength should be taken care of.”

She added that the lockdown would not have that significant an impact on the SPAR Madibaz team because they had planned to be in recess for 10 of the 21 days.

“My message to the players is to work hard, be creative and enjoy this time to focus on yourself and regather your thoughts after a very busy start to the year.”

Ironically she said the break had provided her with a chance for greater interaction with the players, albeit remotely.

“This has been a time to get to know the girls more personally,” said Krige. “You would think that this would happen when you see them as a team, but then everyone competes for your time.

“Now I have time to chat and really get to hear what they think without the face-to-face pressure.”

The Madibaz SAB Regional League team currently head the log and football manager Mark Tommy said they were geared up to take on closest rivals Bay Tigers if the competition resumed.

However, he added that their main focus at this stage was on the safety and health of the student-athletes.

“For now we’re not too concerned about any permutations in terms of the league,” he said. “We just want to make sure players remain safe and maintain reasonable fitness levels.

“To this extent head coach and former Bafana Bafana player Elrio van Heerden has ensured the players are equipped with personalised fitness programmes to allow them to keep active while in lockdown.

“Players are also encouraged to share their experiences and check in with the coach via video calls and activity schedules to ensure fitness work-loads are maintained.”

Tommy said the current season was scheduled to end in the last week of May.

“We are hoping that the season will resume, even if the timeframe is extended beyond May to June.

“It is important that our players maintain a positive mindset and ensure that they control the controllables.”

Madibaz Sport cricket manager Sipho Sibande said all cricket competitions had been put on hold from mid-March following a directive from Cricket SA.

“I think we can all agree that we are dealing with the unknown and at this stage our focus is on ensuring that all our members are safe,” he said.

“In terms of planning for competitions and the outcome of leagues, we have not received any communication yet about how things will be decided.

“We are just happy that Madibaz 1 are comfortably in first position in the Nelson Mandela Bay premier league, having being unbeaten in all our games.”


CAPTION: Madibaz player Hannah Knott-Craig in action in last year’s Varsity Hockey competition. Student-athletes around the country currently find themselves in limbo due to the coronavirus pandemic lockdown. Photo: ASEM Engage


By Gina Cossavella

How the FNB Madibaz rugby team have fared in Varsity Shield

Last year the FNB Madibaz rugby team made it to the finals with an undefeated record, losing their only match of the season to Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) in the finals.

Prior to the start of this season, FNB Madibaz planned on making up for last year. Thus far, they have played four matches and have won three. A promising start but one that doesn’t leave room for anymore error, especially if they plan on being promoted back to the Varsity Cup tournament. For our PE boys to get promoted back to the Varsity Cup championship, they need to be the team that accumulates the highest points from both last year and this season.

The first two matches of this season were played on home ground and FNB Madibaz won the first match 25 – 5 against FNB UKZN on 14 February. The hiccup came on 21 February as they lost against FNB WSU 14 – 19. The boys came back with a bang on 28 February to beat FNB Rhodes 0 – 50 in Grahamstown and on 6 March, FNB Madibaz got back at FNB CPUT by beating them 32 – 24.

FNB Madibaz will be travelling to take on FNB TUT 20 March at 19:00 and will be playing their last round-robin match on home ground at 17:00 on 27 March as they take on FNB UFH who beat them earlier in the season.

Keep your eyes on the television and cheer Madibaz on in person to see how they fare in their last two matches, whether they make the final and ultimately get promoted.

Words: 265

CAPTION: FNB Madibaz centre Johan Lombard goes on a run against Rhodes on 28 February 2020. Photo: ASEM Engage

Why the future is female

The 21st century has seen a massive increase in activism and movements. The messages that these groups aim to spread have been given platforms to achieve a wider reach. We are talking about movements like #Blacklivesmatter, #loveislove, #metoo, the list goes on but the focus on this article is on #TheFutureIsFemale. In this short article, we will breakdown the three reasons why the #TheFutureIsFemale exists.

  1. Smartphones

Ever since the telegram, communication evolved immensely. From landlines to mobile phones to smartphones. Smartphones were considered “Smart” because they could multitask. The ability to play music, play games and then pause to reply to a text message. The game started to change (see what I did there).

With Smartphones evolving and getting better and better, so did the apps. The advancements of the apps started to trigger a new way of living. Now people are expected to multitask and do more than before. You can’t just be a traditional marketer anymore, now you must be good at social media, photo and videography editing and graphic design. Yet again the list goes on. [For homework, I would like you to look at the job requirements of a specific position e.g. Marketing assistant, secretary, teacher. Compare today’s requirements for the job and the requirements for the same job 10-15 years ago. You will get a better understanding.]

However, with multitasking being the keyword. It has been proven that females are better at multitasking than their male counterparts, making them well equipped for the future.

2. Speech

When you look around our society today it’s more women that are vocal. I look among my peers and it’s the females that are more vocal. More females have YouTube channels and are active on their social media platforms. More females are fighting for a cause (it’s not just feminism). The males are barely making ripples, I wonder why they are so silent. Don’t they know what silence does?

With my female peers voicing out opinions now, regardless of how right or wrong, their opinions are, they are learning to speak. In five years, they will be better at it as compared to the ‘silent’ male counterparts.

3. Agreeableness

T. A., Livingston, B. A., & Hurst, C. (2012). Do Nice Guys—and <d Gals—Really Finish Last? The Joint Effects of Sex and Agreeableness on Income. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 102(2), 390-407.

Statistics show that those who score low in agreeableness tend to rise the ladder more as compared to those that score high in agreeableness. Men dominate in the workplace because they tend to score low in agreeableness as compared to their female counterparts that tend to score high in agreeableness. However, the leadership topic has been under close investigation. We need more leaders than mere mangers. The world is lacking in leaders. It has been proven that the most effective leaders score high in agreeableness. As we look for more effective leaders, yet again it is the females that will be better suited to lead the future (Interesting huh?)

In conclusion, when I say “The future is female”, I do not mean it literally but rather the personalities of women have started to prove to be of more value than the old school personality traits that were more male-dominated. I think it is recommended that we learn the skills of both genders and find the best mix. For someone who scores high in agreeableness, you will lose out in negotiations but provide a more motivated and effective environment for your employees or followers. For someone who is not good at multitasking, you will deliver excellent work because of the focus but you will struggle in the modern world that demands a person to be able to multitask.

That is my take on why the future is female. What do you think?

Madibaz prove success story in SWD cricket

The Madibaz cricket team have sent out a message that they are a club to be taken seriously after winning the South Western Districts premier league for the second time.

Based in George, the Nelson Mandela University outfit defeated George Cricket Club by four wickets in the final earlier this month.

This came after the students eliminated defending champions Union Stars by 12 runs in a nail-biting, low-scoring playoff the previous day. After posting only 104, Madibaz restricted Union Stars to 92, thanks to brilliant spin bowling by Joshua Klue (4/9) and Joshua de Ponte (3/15).

It was the first time in a decade that Union Stars, who played in 10 consecutive finals of which they won nine, did not reach the final.

George campus sport manager Hugo Loubser said they were elated with the outcome as it was something they had targeted from the start of the season.

“We previously won the league in 2013-14 and we said to ourselves from the outset that if can get to the final this time, we are capable of matching any of the teams in the league,” he said.

“There are a number of students from schools in the Southern Cape who have decided to study at the George campus as they believe the university can provide the stage for them to perform.

“We are delivering on this and trust that more cricketers will buy into the Madibaz George cricket culture.”

At last year’s University Sport South Africa Week, the Madibaz team, comprising largely of players from the George campus, showed their ability by winning the B section of the tournament.

Loubser said a key driving force in their approach was that “nobody is bigger than the team”.

“The fear of failure does not exist among the players as they know that you will lose some matches. But the key is to turn up for the matches that matter.

“The players also understand their roles and know that responsibility is not something you pass on to the next person.”

He added that the premier league triumph was strong evidence of how cricket had progressed at the George campus.

“In 2007, we played in a ‘merchant’ league, which comprised six matches the entire season,” said Loubser.

“In 2013 we were promoted to the premier league, having won the promotion league.

“We won the premier league in our first season and have remained competitive ever since. Our second team plays in the reserve league.”

Adding to their establishment as a leading club has been the development of its facilities.

“We had the square rebuilt in 2013 and have since added sight screens, redeveloped the artificial nets and built a stand for players,” said Loubser.

“The cricket facility is now often used by SWD Cricket Board as a preferred venue for their SWD Cricket Academy programme.

The George students will now, together with the winners of Western Province and Boland, play in a series of matches from March 29 to 31 to determine the Western Cape representatives for the national club championship in Pretoria from April 13 to 17.

Loubser said there was a positive attitude in the camp ahead of the playoffs.

“This season we often had to face off against more experienced teams with more star players than us,” he said. “So we are looking forward to that challenge.”