IDZ enriches lives of EC indigenous people
21 August 2019 | Web Article Number: ME201915952
THE Coega Development Corporation (CDC) recently announced it had exceeded 120 000 jobs created through its programmes across the country, saying that these have enriched the livelihood of many indigenous people.
The corporation shared some of these individual success stories with Eastern Cape Industrial & Business News.
Sarah Baartman (44), from Colchester, a general worker at the Ikhono construction site, said the job opportunity, “has helped me provide for myself as well as my children”.
These sentiments were echoed by Lawrence Dylon (25), from Bethelsdorp, who is currently plying his trade as a general worker on the same site. “I value the skills I have obtained during my employment on this project, it does not only limit me here but also allows me to access other opportunities outside of Coega,” he said.
Thandaza Baartman (37), who is working as a safety representative at the Ikhono construction site, highlighted how the job has enhanced her career ambitions. “I had been unemployed for a long time, when this opportunity came, I took it with both hands,” she said.
Dr Ayanda Vilakazi, the CDC’s Head of Marketing, Brand and Communications, said their projects had promoted economic growth through job creation, particularly for young people in the region.
“By year-end 2019/20, the CDC is projecting an increase in the number of operational investors in the Coega SEZ at fifty (50), making Coega the most successful and leading SEZ in Africa,” Vilakazi said.
The CDC, is celebrating its 20th anniversary in 2019 and a total of 120 990 jobs have been created through the Coega project (from 112 974 last year) since establishment in 1999.
“Many indigenous people of the Eastern Cape have felt the impact. We have also provided training to more than 100 000 people, most of whom are women and youth.”