Established since its inception in 2003, the National Coordinating Committee (NCC) is pivotal in SAYWHAT’s governance structure, serving as the organisation’s student (youth) sounding board. Comprising of student representatives from different colleges in provinces and elected by SAYWHAT’s Provincial Coordinating Committees (PCC), the NCC plays a crucial role in ensuring that the voices of students are not only heard but also included in planning as well as actively participating in the decision-making processes of SAYWHAT. Our value proposition has always been to involve students in our programmes and, through advocacy efforts, influence the broader national and regional landscape.
Composition of the NCC
The composition of the NCC has evolved over the years as part of strengthening the voices of students in the governance of SAYWHAT. Initially the NCC was made up of 7 students elected at an Annual General Meeting (AGM). The AGM is attended by one representative from each college that is working with SAYWHAT. In 2010, the AGM resolved to expand the number from 7 to 10. A couple of years later, the number increased again to 12 with clear intentions to ensure that each SAYWHAT administrative province has 2 representatives. Currently, the NCC consists of 12 representatives, with two from each SAYWHAT 6 administrative provinces, confirmed during the Annual General Meeting (AGM). The NCC Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson, and Treasurer are elected from among these representatives during the AGM. Additionally, specific roles such as Gender Secretary, Organizing Secretary, HIV and SRHR Secretary, Information and Publicity Secretary, Membership Secretary, and Program Planning and M&E Secretary are appointed by the NCC Chairperson.
General Roles and Responsibilities of the NCC
The NCC’s primary purpose is to provide students with a platform to actively influence SAYWHAT’s programs. They participate in program formulation, planning, and implementation with guidance from the Secretariat. The NCC establishes subcommittees for effective program management, granting membership, and taking disciplinary action for violations of SAYWHAT’s Code of Conduct.
Additionally, the NCC participate in nominating members for the SAYWHAT Advisory Board.
NCC and the SAYWHAT Advisory Board
NCC is represented in the SAYWHAT Advisory Board. At inception, only the NCC Chairperson would sit in the Advisory Board for the duration of his or her term. That was revised in 2010 resulting in the NCC Chairperson and past immediate Chairperson being part of the board. This meant that at any given time, there would be 2 student representatives in the Advisory Board. This has been changed again as from 2023 AGM, there will be 3 students in the Advisory Board namely the sitting NCC Chairperson, Treasurer and the immediate past chairperson. These students will strengthen the voice of young people the governance of SAYWHAT at that level.
How NCC Members are Elected
NCC members are elected during provincial quarterly meetings and confirmed during the General Assembly, held within three months at the end of the calendar year. Each elected NCC member serves a one-year term subject to re-election for another non-renewable term.
The NCC is an integral part of SAYWHAT, empowering students to actively participate in shaping the organisation’s programs and initiatives. With their voices at the forefront, SAYWHAT can better address the reproductive health needs of young people and drive positive change in communities across the nation.