The Chairperson of the Provincial Initiation Coordinating Committee (PICC) Nkosi Langa Mavuso has officially declared the 2021 winter season of ulwaluko officially closed by 31 July 2021.

Nkosi Mavuso said the Risk Adjusted Strategy (RAS) that was approved by the Provincial Executive Council (Exco) allowed for the provincial determination of the winter season which was from 11 June until 31 July 2021.

“Effectively we expect the leadership of the Initiation Fora at all levels, with the support from Traditional Leaders and Ward Councillors to ensure compliance with this decision. The closure is informed by the fact that the Province has only two seasons which is the winter and the summer with budget allocations made available accordingly. We thank our monitoring teams and parents for their support and a job well done albeit the deaths and injuries that have occurred,” said Nkosi Mavuso.

Cogta MEC Xolile Nqatha said government could not have extended the season as some people would like to see happening. We have real challenges including the shrinking fiscal envelope in the Province and the official opening of schools for the third term,” said MEC Nqatha.

He called for parents to support government efforts by adhering to the directive to save lives against the third wave.

“As a responsible government we do not want to expose our children to potential risks like Covid 19 and other related challenges as monitoring teams will not be available for continued monitoring and interventions. We are not out of the woods yet, as the third wave is still ranging and our loved ones continue to lose their lives. We encourage parents to prepare their kids for ulwaluko during the summer season,” said MEC Nqatha.

MEC Nqatha also congratulated the Monitoring Teams for their hard work to realise the safety of abakhwetha. “Without government interventions, the number of deaths could have been higher. We send our heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families and their next of kin,” said MEC Nqatha. //End//

Issued by Cogta EC. For more information, please contact Mamnkeli Ngam on 071 685 7981 or Makhaya Komisa on 066 381 8259.