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Fri Oct 21 22:08:23 SAST 2016

Former NYDA members shortlisted for 2nd term

Neo Goba | 24 March, 2016 15:07
Yershen Pillay
Image by: Extra

A week after the term of the National Youth Development Agency’s term came to an end, the ad-hoc committee has shortlisted two of the previous board members.

Former board Executive Chairperson Yershen Pillay and his deputy Kenny Morolong, are among 13 people who will be interviewed by Parliamentarians next week before Members of Parliament reduce the list down to seven.

“It’s quite humbling that I just get to have another opportunity. One looks forward to whatever parliament has to decide at the end of the day,” Pillay said.

Taking over from an agency that was in irregular expenditure of R133 million in 2013, Pillay said he is content that he has fulfilled what he and his board members were initially appointed for.

“Three years ago, we were tasked as the new board, that we needed stabilise the NYDA. We have transformed the agency into a more credible and capable development agency with integrity and well positioned for further growth. This entity is now functional and has actually responded to the needs and interest of young people,” said Pillay.

Pillay was elected by president Jacob Zuma in 2013 after going through a selection committee that constituted from about 15 MPs, with four from the opposition and the rest from the ANC. Interviews for candidates were concluded on 30 May 2012.

The Young Communist League of South Africa, which Pillay sits as the national chairperson, endorsed him to take a second term at the state-owned entity.

“As I concluded my term with the sense of satisfaction that indeed we’ve done cleaned up the agency, there’s no real expectation for me. I was humbled by the YCL’s nomination and I accepted it,” said Pillay

The agency, which has a R409 million budget received its first ever clean audit last year, a drastic improvement after squandering millions on a controversial youth festival in 2011. Pillay who admits that they took over from a dysfunctional agency, have been able to reduce the agency’s irregular expenditure from R62- million during the 2012-2013 financial year to R16.7-million in 2013- 2014, and to R580 000 in 2014-2015.

This, Pillay states, was achieved through collective leadership which was united.

“Having a strong and productive working relationship, I have no doubt in my mind that if any of the current board members would be reappointed, it would just make it much that much easier because we have a strong foundation and we know what the issues are… which builds well for continuity,” said Pillay.

The board members finished their term without suspension, resignation, terminations or scandals, Pillay states.


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