KPMG Chairman Yunus Suleman, Minister of Public Enterprises Malusi Gigaba, ANC Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa and Senior Partner of KPMG in South Africa Moses Kgosana with learners from various schools at the inaugural Youth Managers' Summit in Parktown on Monday 17 March 2014.
The seminar, aimed at developing their leadership skills through mentoring, was attended by Minister of Public Enterprises, Malusi Gigaba, Shanduka Foundation Chairman, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa, SABC Board Chairperson, Ms Zandile Ellen Tshabalala and prominent radio personality, author and motivational speaker, Sibusiso Leope, known as DJ Sbu.
Minister Gigaba emphasised the importance of ’developing future leaders today’.
“Unless we develop leadership capabilities and potential among our youth now, the future might turn out to be disastrous for all of us,” said Gigaba. “We can’t trust our future with people who have no experience and will begin confronting responsibilities when they must begin to exercise them.
“Developing future leaders today will help you develop insight and practical experience in leadership so that when tomorrow shall come, you are not confronted with an unknown responsibility for the first time,” Gigaba continued. “It is when youth are given a responsibilities today and made to be part of constructing a vision of the future and of pursuing that vision that they will become even better leaders and people tomorrow.”
Mr Cyril Ramaphosa highlighted the importance of education in developing as leaders, using the classes of 1912, 1944 and 1976 as examples of young leaders who have changed the country irrevocably.
“As young people, you must yearn, and yearn deeply to be educated because the class of ’44 were educated people. The class of 1912 left the country to be educated overseas and came back armed with great knowledge and said ‘we must unite and form an organisation that will free our people’, culminating in the formation of the ANC. Without education, a nation perishes. Lock your objectives on getting a good education,” advised Ramaphosa.
As part of the event, 50 KPMG professionals from various disciplines provided mentorship to the young leaders in attendance – motivating and sharing experiences on career-related matters, leadership and the corporate world in general.
To drive home the message and using himself as an example, DJ Sbu encouraged the young people to not let negative voices or their home backgrounds be a hindrance to achieving their dreams. He encouraged the youth to make their studies a priority.
“You have to start changing the way you study. It’s time to rearrange your time. It’s time to prioritise,” he advised.
Mabutho Mthembu, Chairman and Founder of Youth Managers, reiterated the Foundation’s commitment to youth development, “This year we have committed ourselves to focus on three critical pillars, ie strengthening our capacity, our growth and strengthening the quality of our programmes. We require strong partnerships to attain these objectives and will continue investing heavily in retaining our existing partnerships and pursue new ones that will add further value to this cause,”
Commenting on KPMG’s participation in the Summit, Yunus Suleman, Chairman of the KPMG Foundation, said “KPMG recognises the value of education, having prioritised it as a key investment area through our Foundation’s CSI initiatives. Our partnership with Youth Managers Foundation is therefore directly in line with our strategy. We feel privileged to partner with a civil society organisation that is committed to the development of young people, who are the future of this country. Together we can make a difference in building a bright future for South Africa.”