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KwaZulu-Natal's top matriculants were honoured at a special top achievers awards ceremony at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.
A total of 167 students received certificates and scho-larships for their efforts.
The top three students, Luyanda Ndlovu, Mumta Hargovan and Ashish Mothilall each received R30000 in scholarships while the rest got R15000.
Ndlovu said when he wrote his matric exams in 2009 it never crossed his mind that one day he will be receiving recognition for his hard wok.
Ndlovu is currently studying for a degree in accounting.
"I am excited to receive the scholarship. I worked really hard in matric to get good marks and now the standard of work has increased but I am managing," Ndlovu said.
"To be a top achiever and remain one is an individual's choice," University of KwaZulu-Natal vice-chancellor Malegapuru Makgoba said.
Makgoba was addressing parents and students who attended the ceremony which took place at Cosmo Lounge in the university's Westville campus.