By Bulelwa Dayimani
2020 July 11 Ntsoaki Matjie Maila is determined to be the first black woman to open an engineering company which will uplift young women in and around Limpopo. PIC: Chike le Chakane/LEB MEDIA
A Limpopo female mechanic changes the face of the motor industry
Ntsoaki Matjie Maila is a 26-year-old woman who loves getting her hands dirty while earning income repairing cars.
“I love taking things apart and putting them together,” says the young woman who hails from Namakgale village in Limpopo.
Maila’s love for cars led her to enroll herself in a mechanical engineering course in 2018 at Topo class training academy.
“I chose to become a motor mechanic because it is an unusual career path for a young woman,” she says.
She also believes that her chosen career offers security, as mechanics don’t struggle to find employment.
“I love the design aspect and the ability to create something new,” she says. Her passion for cars continued to motivate her even when other people discouraged her from pursuing a career in mechanical engineering.
Maila says people judged her as they didn’t believe a young woman should be a mechanic.
Despite that many didn’t support her dream of being a mechanic; Maila says her late parents taught her to believe in herself.
“My late parents used to say, always remember to make the best choices for yourself and that the key is to believe in yourself,” she says. She adds that her brothers have also been her biggest supporters.
Like the first Nigerian woman mechanic Sandra Aguebor who runs her own workshop, Maila hopes to run her own workshop one day. Maila says she was inspired by the founder of Lady Mechanic Initiative in Nigeria who trains sexually abused and underprivileged women to become mechanics and fend for themselves.
Maila also wants to impart her knowledge on other young women. She hopes this will help to empower them to make their own income and eradicate poverty.
“Being a mechanic offers you a certain level of security, I’m aiming to have my own workshop where I can offer good services,” she says.