11 Mar 2014 14:10pm
WINDHOEK, 11 MAR (NAMPA) Mobile Telecommunications Limited (MTC) on Monday handed over bursaries to four students of the Polytechnic of Namibia (PoN) and 15 MTC employees valued at N.dollars 700 000.
The bursaries were made available through MTC's Scholarship Programme for undergraduate level studies in the fields of electronic engineering, engineering in telecommunications, and software development.
In a speech read on his behalf by the Deputy Director for Tertiary Education, Science and Technology, Immolatrix Geingos-Onuegbu, Education Minister David Namwandi said every year his office is inundated with appeals to consider awarding loans and scholarships to high school graduates and to those who want to pursue advance degrees.
Namwandi said his ministry, through the Namibia Student Financial Assistance Fund (NSFAF), cannot meet the increasing demands and needs of scholars alone, therefore funding from Public-Private-Partnerships (PPP) is vital to complement Government's efforts.
Funding higher education is not a simple task. We have to ensure that resources are equitably distributed, taking into account Namibia's orphans and vulnerable children, he noted.
He stressed that the number of applicants to the NSFAF outweighs the number of recipients by far, and there is simply not enough to go around and benefit each applicant.
A concerted effort and contributions by all stakeholders are therefore required to create a better and more developed Namibia.
He once again urged members of various sectors of the economy to assist Government by investing in higher education and emulate the example of MTC.
Namwandi made it clear that education is a joint effort and its success depends on partners taking hands and sharing a joint agenda on education and training.
Namibians, he said, can reach Vision 2030 through collective efforts as it guides the country's national development agenda, while advocating for a balanced supply of human resources in response to the demands of the labour market.
Vision 2030 calls for an increase in the supply of middle and high-level skills in order to promote economic growth and turn Namibia into a knowledge-based economy.
Together we must ensure that the society is supplied with people who are literate, skilled, articulate, innovative, informed and pro-active. Together we must recognise and award excellence, the education minister said.
On her part, MTC's Manager for Employee Development, Jessica Moore said MTC continues to invest N.dollars 500 000 every year in taking on new students while maintaining the other students on the programme.
Since its inception in 2004, MTC granted over 50 bursaries to students apart from its employees.
While recognising the importance of incentivizing youths, MTC also has a deliberate programme tailor-made for internal employees to enable its workforce to go for further training where needed.