Cape Town - The National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) has appointed Steven Ngubeni as its new Chief Executive Officer (CEO).
Ngubeni, 32, joins the NYDA from the Victor Khanye Municipality in Mpumalanga where he held the position of municipal manager.
He takes over from the outgoing interim CEO Malose Kekana, who was the former Umsobomvu Youth Fund CEO.
NYDA chairman Andile Lungisa said Ngubeni will oversee the major activities, including the new agency's operations and planning for the integration of the Provincial Youth Commissions among other things.
"When appointing Steven Ngubeni, we were mindful of the huge task ahead and we are confident that he is equal to the task," added Lungisa.
Lungisa described Ngubeni as a "young person with substantial knowledge and understanding of youth development in South Africa."
The NYDA was formed by President Jacob Zuma on 16 June as a result of the merger between the National Youth Commission and Umsobomvu Youth Fund. It was officially inaugurated in June following an amendment to a relevant legislation.
Part of its mandate is to create and promote co-ordination in youth development issues as well as to facilitate the roll-out of youth economic participation.
It is also tasked with formulating policy, research and development, providing youth advisory and information services, and access to funding.
For its part, the NYDA has outlined its key performance areas as unemployment, skills shortage, crime and HIV-AIDS, among the challenges faced by the country's youth.
The new CEO said in the next three years, South Africans would see every municipality in the country having an NYDA office.
"We want to move from just giving young people start-up capital and leave them struggling.
"Offering them mentorship will help them expand their enterprises. We will be putting pressure on banks to fund business ideas by young people from disadvantaged communities.
"I am passionate about development; the development of South Africa, communities and most importantly of young people. I believe that with my experience and the support of the board, staff and the young people themselves, we can achieve more in the development of young people," said Ngubeni.
He holds a Bachelor of Technology degree from the University of Johannesburg as well as an MA in Development Studies and an MSc degree in Property Economics and Valuation from the Nelson Mandela University in Port Elizabeth. Currently he is completing his Master of Public Administration degree with the University of Stellenbosch.