Communications Minister Faith Muthambi said she does not want to be a “minister without content”, hence she is stepping up her game and opted to better her education this year.
Muthambi caused quite a stir on Saturday at the Tshwane University of Technology when she attended her first research class with the aim to finish her research programme towards her MTech.
She sat at the back of the class trying to blend in, but it was not long before the class realised who their fellow student was. This is the first time in 20 years that she was sitting in a class, but said she was “excited, empowered and motivated”.
“I am a policy maker, and in the field of the media sector, so it is in my best interest to make sure I continue to learn, and that is why I am here in this research class to enhance my knowledge to enable me to do my work properly based on scholarly and academic research,” Muthambi said.
“I am going to be 43 on the 19th of February. This is a very exciting moment for me, especially to share a class with people like you who have been in the field for more than 20 years. There is a lot of diversity of knowledge and skills in this class and for me that will also enhance my capacity,” the minister said.
Muthambi said she did not want any special treatment and wanted to be treated like any other student in her class because that was the right thing to do. She said she wanted to encourage people out there to make time to study no matter how busy they were.
“There are many people I look up to. Some are professors and some are doctors. It is my plan that, at the end of the day, I must have a clear idea before I reach 50,” she explained.
Muthambi said that even though she had such a demanding responsibility, she would make sure she attended every single class.
“I am a politician and I am a minister and today I must service my constituency that is in Limpopo at the same time. I am also inspired by two of my colleagues, Nthambeleni Gabara and Bathandwa Mbola, from the ministry who are attending this class with me. They will keep me on my toes and ask ‘oh no, do you want to be a minister without content?’” Muthambi said.
She said she wanted to make education and learning fashionable and inspire young people lingering on the streets to seek funding from government to return to class.