Address by Mr B Holomisa, MP (UDM President) at the Upper Ngqungqu Junior Secondary School in Mqanduli, Eastern Cape on 1 September 2017

  • Programme Director,
  • Principal, teachers, parents and learners
  • Ladies and Gentlemen

I am humbled and yet extremely delighted to be re-joined with a place where my educational journey began. I am happy to be back here, wearing no uniform, carrying no slate and with no prospect of a corporal punishment administered to me for my naughty behaviour.

(Kuluvuyo kakhulu kum ukuphinda ndibelapha phakathi kwanahlali base Mqanduli. Kulapha apho ndaqala khona amabanga am aphantsi emfundo. Kodwa namhlanje andinxibanga mpahla yesikolo, ndingaphethanga nasi leyiti futhi andinaxhala lokubethwa ngu titshalakazi ngenxa yokumosha).

I am joining you, my family, in celebrating an achievement of the bricks and mortar that today define this important site of education. In our days, there were no prefabricated structures, we started with one rondavel which we shared with the church. So, it was a school from Monday to Friday and a church on the weekend. Remarkably with those conditions, this school has produced many outstanding leaders of society, be it in the political space, religious and elsewhere. I am certain that this is the route that we, as Upper Ngqungqu, shall not abandoned. You now have a complete school with laboratories and libraries, and therefore tools at your disposal to help you write your own destiny.

(Ndize kuni njengosapho lwam ndizokubhiyozela nani ngenzame zethu. Ngentsuku zethu kwakukho uronta omnye apha wayesentyenziswa nayi Cawe. Esisikolo siphuhlise inkokhelo phantsi kweemeko ezinzima. Ndiqinisekile ukuba lomzila soze niwulahle).

I said, today, I am not carrying a slate but offer trees.

I am delighted that I have managed to deliver on my promise to donate trees as part of my social responsibility to plough back where I was taught basic life skills like writing and behaving. These trees are shall add value to this R30 million centre of education. It will protect the grounds on which the school is built and protect the buildings themselves, against natural disasters like storms. Above all, the tree will conserve the nature we harbour such as birds and squirrels, so we need to preserve and provide shade to be enjoyed during the coming summer days.

(Ndiyavuya ke ukuba ndikwazile ukusifezekisa isithembiso sam sokunipha njenge social responsibility apho ndikhulela khina ndafundiswa khona).

Indeed, many of our schools in the rural hinterland, were ignored by the minority apartheid government and thus, they were not greened and landscaped leaving them brown and dusty. We must take advantage of these trees and bring a healthy atmospheres and breath fresh airs that will make use teach and learn better.

Our neighbouring Anglican Church should benefit from these trees considering our long-standing history.

In this regard, I humble myself and express my gratitude to Mr Keith Kirsten for his support and the donation of these trees. He is a world-renowned gardener and a philanthropist. It is these gestures that may appear small yet are responsible for a fundamental change in the lives of the people and those in the rural areas like us. Once again, thank you Keith.

Learners and teachers, you are daily custodians of this new life giver (your child) that has arrived in our home. It is your daily responsibility to nature, feed, clean and its life as it grows to be a nurturer of our wellbeing. Take care and make good use of the trees.

(Kuni bafundi noo titshala, ndiyacela ukuba niyiphathe kakuhle lemithi njengabantwana benu).