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MA Students meet the South African President Jacob Zuma at the budget speech

Two of oPresidentZumaWithMAstudentur Master students, Winnie Sambu and Seyfe Tadesse, were invited to participate at the South African budget speech, which was held at the South African Parliament in Cape Town on 22nd February 2012. This gave them the unique opportunity not only to gain first-hand experiences in development policy issues but, in addition to this, to meet the South African President, Jacob Zuma, face-to-face!

Picture: President Zuma with MA student S. Tadesse

For the first time, the South African 2012/2013 budget surpassed the 1 trillion mark. It is largely centred on developing infrastructure, reducing poverty and inequalities, creating employment opportunities and expanding investments.

The students perceived the experience as highly enriching and insightful. Seyfe Tadesse, who has worked for the Ethiopian treasury, felt that the visit gave him the opportunity to better understand the South African budget system and was particularly impressed by the South African government´s commitment to the development of infrastructure. He also hopes that this will ensure the creation of employment opportunities, which would contribute to economic growth and development.

Winnie Sambu, in turn, commended the South African government for increasing its budget allocation on social programmes like health, education and housing projects. According to her, if properly implemented, this would have the potential to contribute to the reduction of poverty and inequality both in the short and in the long run.

JulianMayAndMAstudent

Julian May (Director of the ISD) and MA student Winnie Sambu