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A Mpumalanga primary school that has made it compulsory for its pupils to learn sign language scooped a R10000 prize during the premier's Service Excellence Awards.
Lekazi Primary School in KaNyamazane near Nelspruit, which was nominated in the service excellence category, admits both physically disabled and deaf pupils.
The other winners were Ian Mhaule of Bushbuckridge, who won in the youth category, and Jabulani Ngcane in the education category.
Vusi Ndokuyi and Tshepo Masilela were tops in the volunteerism and culture, sports and recreation categories, respectively.
Each winner pocketed R10000 and a trophy.
Mpumalanga Premier Thabang Makwetla said the awards celebrate outstanding performance by teams in service excellence in their respective areas of work.
"These awards recognise public service innovation and commitment to improve the quality of service delivery to the people of Mpumalanga," said Makwetla.
"We bestow accolades to the youth and public servants across Mpumalanga for hard work and dedication to the betterment of the lives of the people," he said.
"We acknowledge youth organisations and individuals for innovative projects and initiatives that help to advance youth empowerment and the realisation of provincial development priorities."
Makwetla said the success of the province in dealing with poverty and unemployment challenges depended on its ability to provide skills development that empower youth to take advantage of employment and business development opportunities.
"We hope that the recognition of the contribution by the youth will serve to provide inspiration to all the youth in the province to participate in development initiatives that advance their self-development and the empowerment of the communities where they live," Makwetla said.
The premier said as all the winners were being feted for a job well done, it was worth noting that service excellence was the responsibility to which all institutions of government should commit and strive to achieve at all times.
"This is the only way we are going to make a difference in the lives of the citizens of the province."