Recently I attended the annual Toastmasters Maxicon conference. The theme in 2013 was Leadership, hence the name Leadercon.

Congratulations to Jabulani Mangena of Midrand Toastmasters Club for being placed first at the District 74 International Speech contest held recently at Indaba Hotel & Conference centre. Winner of the District 74 humourous contest in 2010, Jabulani came first again – this time for the International contest with his speech titled “Garbage Bin Boy.”

OAP Editor, Abisha Gowere spoke to Jabulani on the day he won the contest and below was their conversation.

Interview with the District 74 International Speech Contest winner 2013: Jabulani Mangena

1. How are you feeling about coming first in the District Contest?

Very excited, I prayed about this and I knew God is faithful, he would answer my prayers.

2. What inspired you to keep going through out the stages from Club to District level?

The inspiration from my 10 year old daughter, she believed so much in me.

3. What advice would you give to future speech contestants?

Be yourself, tell your story and speak from your heart, and be careful of what has put you down in the past.

4. Your speech was about you as the “Garbage Bin Boy,” what inspired you to choose this topic ?

What I said was my true story. I had always been waiting to get an opportunity to tell my story.

The winning was not without competition. Louis Nigrini of The Sages, who came first in the Evaluation contest was placed second after Jabulani with his speech was “Time travel” Rudo Bingepinge-Dzenga of Bedfordview was placed third with her speech titled “Make some lemonade”

Well-done to the rest of the participants listed below and in alphabetical order of Division:
• Christijan Schoeman – Centurion – Area A2 – My eulogy
• John Hambleton – Cape Town – Area D2 – Attitude leads to altitude
• Marianah Lourens – Algoa – Area E1 – THe dream
• Andrew McGregor – Pietermaritzburg – Area F2 – You choose
• Graham Shirley – Bacon & Egg – Area S3 – The talons of time

Jabulani Mangena is vying for one of nine spots in the World Championship of Public Speaking to be held Saturday, Aug. 24 in Cincinnati, Ohio, and we wish him all the best. He can be contacted at