We – the interns of SANGOCO – would like to introduce our work and ourselves to the readers of this blog.

Thanks to the generous donation of the Eskom Foundation the South African NGO Coalition (SANGOCO) was able to employ six young interns for the year 2006.

The six interns came form different skills and academic/working backgrounds:

Jacobeth Makhubele is doing her honours in Media Studies at the University of Witwatersrand.

Muelelwa Khosa has accomplished her Bachelor Studies in International Relations and Political Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand in 2005.

Simon Schaefer has accomplished his Bachelor Studies in African Development in Geography and Economics at the University of Bayreuth (Germany) in 2005.

Mohammed Ziyaad is doing his Bachelor Studies in International Relations and Political Studies at the University of the Witwatersrand.

Theenegran Chetty is currently completing his degree in Computer Studies through UNISA. Previously, he worked as a network/IT technician for Sun-International (Carousel Casino).

Marius Kotze was a fulltime worker in Layout and Design before he joined SANGOCO.

For further information view our profiles on the blog, which will be uploaded soon.

Collectively, we are assigned to track down the historical and institutional mandate of the coalition by doing research, collect and distribute relevant information on SANGOCO’s core activities and campaigns.

Further, we assist our Manager Hassen Lorgat and SANGOCO’s Executive Director Zanele Twala.

Thanks to the Eskom Foundation that made it possible for us (interns) to be part of the Coalition, at the same time being trained in the NGO sector fighting against poverty and inequality to make South Africa a better place.


My interview with Mr Dolos Luka

Interview with Mr Dolos Jafta Luka: SANGOCO’’s new Chairperson

Muelelwa: Please tell me about yourself

Mr Luka:

I am a 47-year-old community development worker who has long been involved in NGOs, CBOs, leadership, and in community activities. In 1974 I was politically activated while in high school while involved in community structures in Potchestroom. At the age of 24 I was involved in Ikageng Ratepayers Association. In 1976 during the uprising, I was a very strong political activist; this was the time of the Black Consciousness Movement. During the 1980s, I became a member of the United Democratic Front (UDF), and chairperson of Free State Detainees Parents Committee (DPSC). I used to assist political prisoners; those who were studying while in prison. I would assist them with study materials. After the DPSC was debarred I continued to be a community developer by joining the Matla Trust in North West, as a voter education trainer. In 1995, after the 1994 elections, the Trust crumbled since it was led by people form exile. I then joined IDASA and SANGOCO after the fall of the Matla Trust. I was the Deputy Secretary General of SANGOCO in North West and a Provincial Coordinator for the North West Community Policing Forum Project, for IDASA.

Muelelwa: What do you find most attractive about being SANGOCO’s Chairperson?

Mr Luka:

It is the leadership in the organization. Repositioning SANGOCO is one of the key effects that we would like to achieve working together with the senior positions in the organization, for example the Executive Director Zanele Twala, Media & Communications Manager Hassen Lorgat and the volunteers.

My aspiration is to put behind the negative perceptions that people had believed about SANGOCO; for example that the organization care less about the member organizations and is also closing down. Rebuilding SANGOCO especially the provinces that needs an inspirational hand is a major task to do to ensure that more work is done, and perceive that it is done effectively.

Muelelwa: Looking at your experience, do you feel that you have top managerial potential as the new chairperson?

Mr Luka:

With the past experience and the skills I achieved, there is no doubt that I have top managerial potential for the position. I have a lot of work in leadership, so the skills are not a problem, how to use is essential while in leadership.

Muelelwa: What are the challenges that you think you will be facing as the new NEC chairperson?

Mr Luka:

The organization has got challenges that it is facing. “The most difficult one is the provincial structures of SANGOCO”. The issue of funding is also a problem, because lack of resources makes it difficult to get the work done on time. I consider that the organization needs to get more resources so that the Community Based Organisations)(CBOs) are also empowered on the ground. We need to ensure that well established Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) are brought back into the SANGOCO fold. For example, in North West, the composition of Civil Society is the NGOs. SANGOCO needs to engage government to fund the Civil Society, to sustain the partnership between government, Civil Society, and the private sector

Muelelwa: What difference will you make that will show that there is a new leader?

Mr Luka:

Work has been done at national level but not with provinces. It is the NEC responsibility to ensure that even the provinces are effective and doing work in a way. The other thing is to ensure that the NEC members are always well informed about the activities taking place as well as minor changes thereof, that they must communicate regularly.
There needs to be road shows for the NEC members, to go to each of the provinces and see what has been achieved and the problems thereof. To ensure that the leadership brought on board is empowered, so the NGO week can be effective and well organized. In relation to this, a Succession Plan is significant to ensure that new people coming on board do not start afresh but continue from the last one. Together with other members of the NEC, we will conquer and make a difference in our organization.

Interview by Muelelwa Khosa

When I met Tim Modise

On Wednesday the 25 April I had the great opportunity to meet Radio and TV presenter Tim Modise at MC Weiller School in East Bank. It was the first time I met Mr. Modise. During the GCE Action Week he was invited to teach a group of ca. 50 learners about the importance of education. Before he went to the classroom he told Hassen Lorgat (Manager of Campaigns and Communication at SANGOCO), Flaki Ramothata (the principle of the school) and me (intern at SANGOCO) “the most important thing for me going back to school is to make the kids happy” and “I really want them to have fun”.

When Tim Modise entered the classroom the kids were very excited. When Tim Modise asked the learners: “Do you know who I am?” all the learners shouted: “You are Tim Modise form TV!”

After the learners and the teacher welcomed him, Tim Modise started to teach about the importance of education. He explained why it is important to go to school and do homework and to be serious about school. Good education is the most powerful tool to fight poverty and inequality.

At the beginning the learners were a little bit shy, but I think that is normal when you kids meet a celebrity they only know from TV.

After a short while the kids broke with their resistance and a good dialogue developed.
Tim Modise taught for about 2 hours.

After the lesson Tim Modise, Hassen Lorgat, and I met with Flaki Ramothata. She told us that she was so grateful and felt really honoured that Tim Modise came to MC Weiller School.
“It is so crucial that the kids see role models coming to them. They really look up to you, Mr. Modise! We would love to have something like this more often,” Flaki said.
Tim Modise, Hassen Lorgat and the principle agreed that they would try to keep the idea and campaign alive.

My personal opinion about Tim Modise’s day at school is:
Tim Modise is a very nice guy, who is really down to earth and does care about the children in South Africa. I feel honoured that I had the opportunity to meet him.

by Simon Schaefer

Back to School


From 24 – 30th April, civil society, made up of child rights activists, teacher unions and NGOs showed they really care about ensuring every child gets quality education, delivered by a qualified teacher. Approximately 18 million more teachers are needed if every child is to receive a quality education and there are 100 million children are still being denied the opportunity of going to school. Millions more are sitting in over-crowded classrooms for only a few hours a day. Without urgent action these children will remain in poverty and at far greater risk of HIV infection.

The South African NGO Coalition was part of the NGOs who were involved in the “every child needs a teacher campaign” together with the South African Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU). During the Action Week, the Ministers in various departments, celebrities, as well as some from the media went back to school to teach the learners about the importance of education. The list included the Minister of Education Naledi Pandor, Public Administration, Geraldine Fraser Moleketi, Sunday Times Editor, Mondi Makhanya, 702 Radio presenter, Tim Modise, SA FM presenter, Thabiso Sekwane, Bishop of the Methodist Church, Paul Verryn, as well as others. The Ministers and celebrities were able to get an idea how much resources are needed to improve the quality of our education. The resources needed might be stationery, chairs, desks, more classrooms, proper school building, as well as more teachers. The Deputy Minister Phumzile Mlambo Ncquka will only go back to school on the 15th of May 2006, in Ohlange High School in Kwazulu Natal. The struggle still continues with the "every child needs a teacher" campaign, so that we could achieve the goal of quality education to all.

by Muelelwa Khosa