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MATSAPHA - The Contractor Development Strategy (CDS) is the most important aspect of the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP).

It is important because it aims to develop skills and promote business sustainability for emerging contractors in the construction industry. “Delivering on quality infrastructure, within cost and time, is an expectation for project owners who invest significant amounts of money into projects.” This was mentioned by Maqhawe Mnisi the acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Construction Industry Council (CIC) of Eswatini.


Mnisi said CIC is implementing CDS which would be their blueprint in driving training and capacity building initiatives for the construction industry. “Rolling out of the CDS this current financial year provides us with an opportunity to accelerate implementation of initiatives that are the heartbeat of the industry”, he said. The CEO also mentioned that they have increased funding and intake of participants towards industry training and capacity building initiatives.

Mnisi said the aim is to deliver quality infrastructure for projects while contractors and consultants require the necessary skills to be able to deliver on construction projects. He said the upskilling of industry stakeholders in financial and business management is one of the key interventions that would have a positive impact in ensuring that construction businesses not only grow over time but also become sustainable. “We have thus partnered with the University of Eswatini (UNESWA) to ensure we address some of the skills gap we have identified as a priority for building capacity,” he said. Mnisi further encouraged participants to apply the skills they have gained to ensure industry businesses operate effectively and efficiently.


UNESWA Vice Chancellor Professor Justice Thwala said financial and business management is key to a successful business as well as its credibility to the market and industry. “With the current challenges in the economic front, such short course are critical tool to maintain and sustain the running of construction projects in the midst of competition and ensures that the construction industry adheres and complies to national laws”, he said. Thwala also mentioned that UNESWA signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with CIC back in 2019 and held the first cohort of CIC managers on project management and contract management.

“Today we are witnessing further benefits of the partnership agreement that is yielding fruits through skills and knowledge transfer,” he said.
 The Vice Chancellor added that UNESWA’s commitment to the partnership would continue to be effective and timely in delivering programmes that CIC may demand as per the MoU.

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