Beneficiaries awarded over R2 million in funding last year still awaiting placement

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Almost a year has passed without any indication that Sifundo Tyola* will be placed in an apprenticeship, despite there being government allocated funds for him.

Tyola is among a group of 45 young people who were allocated R2 250 000 by the services Sector Education and Training authority (Seta) to be part of an apprenticeship programme at the Emfuleni Local Municipality in Gauteng.

It is a three-year programme intended to train artisans – a scarce skill according to government.

For the first year, in October, the Seta made money available to Bayanda Business Academy in Gauteng, which was contracted to place beneficiaries, but this never happened

According to Seta’s budget allocation, R50 000 was allocated for each beneficiary for their first year of the programme.

“I’m disappointed because I waited for a year to get placed, but still it’s not clear whether we will ever be placed,” Tyola said.

He registered at Bayanda Business Academy in April last year and attended electrical and boilermaking theory classes from November until February this year.

He got a stipend of R2 500 for attending classes. However, he claims other beneficiaries are still battling to get their money.

The academy’s managing director Mapule Mahlulo said beneficiaries would be placed next month.

“They have completed their theoretical training and are in the process of finalising their portfolio of evidence files. They will be placed.”

Mahlulo said they had problems the with Emfuleni municipality, which had agreed to place beneficiaries.

She said they contracted Southampton City College to train beneficiaries.

Mahlulo said they would only get the R2 million from Seta once beneficiaries had completed their first year of the programme.

She said Seta paid stipends to students who attended classes.

Services Seta brand management senior manager Duduzile Mwelase said more than R2 million has yet to be made available to Bayanda.

This article was first published on city-press.news24.com