Top matric student meditated and listened to birds

Joshua Nkosi, the top maths and physical science matriculant in Mpumalanga. /MANDLA KHOZA
Joshua Nkosi, the top maths and physical science matriculant in Mpumalanga. /MANDLA KHOZA

Mpumalanga's best maths and physical science pupil Joshua Nkosi says he went to the mountain to meditate, study and listen to animals.

Nkosi, 18, who was a pupil at Lugebhuta High School in Schoemansdal near Eswatini border, walked home with a total of R41,000 in cash after being named as one of the province's top 10. He aced maths and physical science.

Education MEC Bonakele Majuba invited 27 matrics who performed exceptionally well in the province, to a function at the Graceland Casino in Secunda on Wednesday.

The event was attended by minister in the presidency, Jackson Mthembu, members of parliament, mayors, speaker of the provincial legislature Busi Shiba and opposition parties.

"I'm very happy for my results. This is what I wanted as a gift to my parents. I had to leave my home and stay at my aunt's place because my home was far from the school. I didn't want to walk a lot, so I decided to move out," Nkosi said.

"My study [strategy] was that since we stay next to the mountains, each time I come back from school I would take my books and go to the mountains, meditate and then study there and then go home to sleep.

"I don't like noise when I study but birds and wild animals noise is cool for me."

He said he was going to study towards mechatronics.

"First for me was to change friends, limit my time and be organised. I can say boys my age are mostly out drinking but I decided to save myself by not attending parties or drink.

"I'm interested in both mechanical engineering and electronics, so that is why I decided to study mechatronics."

He got a standing ovation when he went up to the stage to receive both his awards as he got total marks for maths and physical science.

Majuba said with the province achieving an 80.3% pass rate, it meant they were "breaking the ground".

"Our joy is that rural schools did well and this is because we did a lot of programmes visiting the schools in those areas," Majuba said.

While Ehlanzeni was the best region in Mpumalanga, scoring 84% pass rate, Greta Catherine Kupershoek from Hoérskool Middelburg was named the overall top pupil. She was presented with a new Toyota Aygo car.

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