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Eskom sponsors prizes for learners at the Schools Debates on the EC State of the Province Address (SOPA)
Sunday, 18 March 2018: Eskom has awarded prizes to three of the learners competing in the schools debate on the Eastern Cape State of the Province Address (SOPA), which took place at the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature in Bisho yesterday.
As part of its investment in programmes that are geared towards the upliftment of the communities where it operates, Eskom sponsored prizes for the top three learners debating the Energy topic. Thahira Mbele from Ugie High School scooped first place in this category and was awarded a tablet by Eskom and a trophy. Thahira also took home the overall second place winner of the School’s debate. Chulumanco Nyakambi from King Edward High School took second place under the energy topic and Nobulumko Gebengana from Zingisa Comprehensive High School came in third. Both learner’s recieved a notebook from Eskom and a trophy.

Collin Reddy (Eskom EC GM), Phumulo Masualle (EC Premier), Sello Masongwa (Eskom), Zama Mpondwana (Eskom), Nobulumko Gebengana from Zingisa Comprehensive High School (third place) 
Eastern Cape General Manager, Collin Reddy said: “Eskom has vested interest in maths and science programmes, particularly those that involve the youth. The future of our organisation rests in the minds of maths and science enthusiasts and this is one of the reasons we value every schools development programme in our country. This is one of the many platforms we are participating in, that allow young South Africans to ignite their passion and deliberate on careers changing opportunities.”
Eskom has initiated a five year Schools Adoption & Skills Development programme, to enhance and promote excellence in education, by providing learning equipment, infrastructure and teacher support resources to schools in the Eastern Cape Province. Last month, Eskom partnered with the Department of Education to launch the maths, science and technology initiative through the Technology Research Activity Centre (TRAC), aimed at increasing interest and uptake of Maths and Science in schools. Eskom’s Schools Nuclear Debate was also launched last year, with the main objective to empower learners with debating and public speaking skills.
“The main objective for Eskom in the Schools Debate Programme is to empower learners with the most important aspects of career growth, which include governance and leadership. Together with the Department of Education we need to strengthen our collaborative effort with developmental structures in our province to find and nurture new generation of leaders, mentors, trend setters and community builders. May this programme stimulate your young minds and interest to take over the reigns as future leaders of our province,” added Reddy.
The Office of the Premier has been partnering with the Department of Education to facilitate schools gathering to analyse the State of the Province Address (SOPA) by Eastern Cape Premier, Phumulo Masualle, as a way of encouraging learners to be involved in the development and shaping of Government programmes. The pupils raised compelling discussions on five topics, namely: Effective use of ICT in schools, The impact of drugs/substance abuse on social cohesion in the Province, How SA can contribute on the energy (electricity) mixes – for or against nuclear energy in that mix, Turning around the situation of unused arable land and livestock sent for fattening in other Provinces and Communities effectively benefitting from the oceans economy. Old mutual and Mercedes Benz were also involved in sponsoring prizes for the learners.