Deputy President Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka said that South African corporations were embracing the challenge of scarce skills and congratulated companies for not “simply throwing their hands up in the air”.

Speaking at the KPMG growth acceleration programme (Gap), a partnership between the State and the private sector, Mlambo-Ngcuka said that it was pleasing to see that South African firms were taking up the responsibility of producing the skills they needed and that they did not only rely on importing scarce skills.

“The skills revolution has started in South Africa.”

KPMG agreed to the Gap to take graduates on board for a period of 12 months to mentor and monitor them in the areas of corporate finance, forensic finance, internal audit services, information risk management, investment management and funds and project management.

This initiative, which was aligned with the government’s Joint Initiative on Priority Skills Acquisition, was developed to tackle South Africa’s skills shortage, and increasing number of unemployed graduates.

“On behalf of South Africa’s people we are even more heartened by KPMG’s gesture of doubling the next intake of BCom graduates to their mentoring programme. I think that the difference that you are going to make in the lives of these young people is amazing,” Mlambo-Ngcuka said in an emailed copy of her speech.

She added that she hoped that some of the graduates from the programme would in the future become CFOs in government.

“It is important to note that some of the challenges of service delivery in government can be traced to a lack of much needed financial skills which leads to a lack of appropriate spending.”

PUBLICATION: Engineering News
AUTHOR: Mariaan Olivier
DATED: 26th June 2007