Projecting the relevance of scientific innovations and research in Africa and the importance of establishing joint efforts between Africa and international countries in the energy sector, the former Minister of Energy, Naledi Pandor highlighted this during a two-day annual Science Forum South African summit held in Pretoria from the 7-8 of December in 2017.
“We believe that through science that many challenges faced by our communities can be addressed. Secondly, we intend to promote international collaborations. We believe it is through collaboration that our ties are strengthened that science not only becomes stronger in Africa but globally and that ground-breaking research is enabled.”
In light of the concern to grow science in Africa and to further establish and equip the youth with necessary skills to expand their horizons within the energy sector. The CDC’s project development officer for energy projects, Ms. Khuthala Somdaka has set foot towards projecting the voice, initiatives and representation of young people from the Eastern Cape (EC) by being one of the selected participants of the third BRICS Young Scientists Forum program. A great platform to expose the EC to youth connectivity globally and further establish conversations around measures of solving societal challenges through Science and technology.
Amongst other values Coega upholds, innovation through technology forms part of the key ways to leverage socio economic growth in South Africa. It is through these significant channels within the energy sector that the CDC targets to establish the relationship between technical/research analysis and the commercial side to energy.
“First of all I must say, Coega will develop your skills and expose you to many opportunities,” says Khuthala Somdaka CDC Project development officer for energy projects.
“The topic I have chosen to talk about at the Summit focuses on Energy Security, Diversity Socio-economic Development which seeks to highlight the impact of energy resources for the Eastern Cape to help facilitate job creation and skills development for the Region.“
“I will also be providing a case study demonstrating the work that the CDC has implemented over the years as well as future strategic plans in place to uplift the economy of the Eastern Cape.”
“My work at the CDC and my studies have enabled me to speak authoritatively on the subject, as I hold BSc, majoring in microbiology and biochemistry. I obtained my Hons in Biochemistry and then pursued my Masters of Science in Chemical Engineering from the North West University, Potchefstroom.”
South Africa is proactively transforming and diversifying the country’s energy mix. This ultimately opens an array of opportunities within the Energy Sector. From a holistic perspective, there are opportunities linked to the upstream, midstream and downstream of the Energy Value Chain. These opportunities are not only linked to power generation, but cut across other spheres, such as skills development, supplier development, research and development and localisation. The sector is also starting to open opportunities for small business, women-owned business and black-owned business.
“In my topic I will expand on some of these opportunities especially with the extensive work done by the CDC and the research I have undertaken and my involvement in some of the projects.”
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