We've got news for you.

Register on SowetanLIVE at no cost to receive newsletters, read exclusive articles & more.
Register now

Duo establishes thriving business after apprenticeship

Government tells youth: artisans rule the world

Boys Auto (Pty) Ltd in Newcastle is run by two young artisans who have created jobs for locals.
Boys Auto (Pty) Ltd in Newcastle is run by two young artisans who have created jobs for locals.

The government encourages the youth to gain practical skills for their vocations and create jobs for others.

As many young people seek to enroll at tertiary institutions to pursue their dreams, technical and vocational education and training (TVET) colleges are highly recommended to gain practical skills and create jobs.  

Young people are encouraged to consider TVET colleges as an alternative to traditional universities. The country seeks to produce 30,000 artisans a year by 2030.

Wanda Thobani Msimango, 28, and Mbuso Prince Ngwenya, 27, from Newcastle in KwaZulu-Natal are proof that artisans are masters of their own destiny.

In 2019, they established Boys Auto, an automotive repair services company after completing their apprenticeship.

“We provide professional mechanical solutions to motor vehicles and commercial vehicles. Our services include servicing, brake repairs, diagnosing what could be wrong with the vehicle and clutch and other repairs.

“Before starting the business, we both started working from home during weekends while doing our apprenticeship at different automotive companies,” says Msimango.

Msimango and Ngwenya attended Majuba TVET College in Newcastle where Msimango studied diesel trade theory and Ngwenya studied motor trade theory. After their apprenticeship, they passed their trade test.

Ngwenya started his apprenticeship at BMW Supertech in 2015 and qualified in 2018. Msimango did his at Bell Equipment in 2015 and qualified in 2019.

Their business has created jobs for four people in their area. Msimango says the business would not be a success if it was not for the help from the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA), which granted the business R50,000 to buy tools for its workshop to meet the requirements of the Retail Motor Industry Organisation (RMI).

The RMI accreditation ensures that businesses in the motor industry sell quality products and services at a fair and reasonable price.

Msimango encourages young people to consider becoming artisans because the skills now needed in the country are offered at TVET colleges.  

What is a trade test?

According to the South African Qualifications Authority, a trade test is the final test before becoming a qualified artisan. This test is assessed by a representative from the National Artisan Moderating Body.

A person who has a trade test certificate has met the requirements to be called a qualified artisan. One of the moderating bodies that issues trade certificates is the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations.

• This article first appeared in GCIS's Vuk’uzenzele

Would you like to comment on this article or view other readers' comments? Register (it’s quick and free) or sign in now.

Speech Bubbles

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.