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EYA application period extended to accommodate more participation

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MBABANE - The Entrepreneur of the Year Award (EYA) has received a satisfactory number of applications for this year’s competition.

This was revealed by a member of the organising committee who came out to allay fears that they have not received enough applications for this year’s event.

This follows an announcement made by SEDCO last week on the various media announcing the extension of the deadline for applications by entrepreneurs.

Extension

The entity extended the deadline for application to October 15, 2010 much against its normal way of handling the application process.

SEDCO Marketing Manager, Fanelwako Fakudze said all the preparations were on track.

He said the extension was only granted to accommodate entrepreneurs who have been sluggish in meeting all the requirements as for qualification.

"We have received a good number of applications especially from candidates who own formally registered businesses. Although I am not in a position to reveal figures for now, I can safely say that everything is under control," he said.

When asked if the extension of the deadline had not given an unfair advantage to those who manipulated the extension in their favour, Fakudze said the competition was meant to give everyone a chance. He said they were aware of the challenges faced were by most entrepreneurs and the fact that they found it hard to afford certain fees to get their books in order. According to Fakudze, the extension was purely an attempt to offer a grace period to those who failed to meet the initial deadline because of various reasons.

Believes

Asked if the extension opened a opportunity for those who had missed out, Fakudze said applications did come in, but still did not to commit himself on the number of applications received.

Fakudze said the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade will soon come up with a date for the big event and judges will be announced in due course.

The EYA is an endeavour by government to recognise the efforts of local entrepreneurs while also encouraging more people to venture into business. Government believes that with the informal sector taking part in business, a lot of issues can be addressed and the economy enhanced. These are issues such as unemployment, poverty and crime.

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