"What we see here is a life changing experience that all South Africans must embrace and be proud of; these young people who came from different backgrounds in January are trained and ready for the world. This is what the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) can offer to many unemployed young people, personal development and skills development" - Minister Sisulu
20 Aug 2010
After spending the day at the South African Navy graduation ceremony the Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Lindiwe Sisulu told gathered parents and graduates that South Africa must be proud of the training and the personal development programme of the navy and embrace it for personal development and skills training of young unemployed youth.
The minister said the Military Skills Development (MSD) programme is designed to rejuvenate and bring in new blood into the SANDF.
"This programme is designed to rejuvenate and ensure that the SANDF has young blood for all its operations, but what we see is that it also builds these young people into men and women who are responsible, able and ready to lead in society. The SANDF is producing leaders," she said.
She added that every year the SANDF take 5 000 young people from more than 30 000 applicants who want to join the force, disappointing many others. But the newly introduced National Youth Service to start in the next financial year will absorb additional young people for a short military training and also expose them to different career opportunities.
"The MSD will continue as our prime programme to bring in new blood into the SANDF. With the National Youth Service, we are introducing a special skills and personal development programme that will target unemployed youth," She said.
The minister thanked parents for allowing the SANDF to look after their children and help them to be better citizens.
"Research has shown that some of the best business people and managers are from the military. I can reassure all the parents here today that you made the right decision for your children to come here, I am sure you agree with me, look at them today, beautiful and standing tall," She said.
The graduation ceremony is attended by parents, leadership of the SANDF and the commanding officers of the South African Navy. Six hundred young people graduated today from a basic military course. They will then proceed to different units for different mastering and career development.
The next MSD intake is in January 2011, where the SANDF will take another 5 000 young people to be trained by the South African Navy, The South African Army, South African Air Force and South African Medical Health Service as part of the SANDF skills development programme.
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Issued by: Department of Defence
20 Aug 2010
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