21 Jul 2015 16:30pm
WINDHOEK, 20 JUL (NAMPA) - The Deputy Minister of Higher Education, Training and Innovation, Dr Becky Ndjoze-Ojo is currently touring various regions to determine the need for vocational training centres (VTCs) there.
Speaking to Nampa at Opuwo on Friday, Ndjoze-Ojo said her tour started in the Kunene Region on Thursday, where after she would travel to the Erongo, Otjozondjupa and Omaheke regions to talk to governors and councillors to get their views on the establishment of VTCs in their respective regions.
What we at the ministry did was to look at the education system as it is, and we have decided that we have seen that the vocational leg is very weak compared to the academic way of doing things, she said.
There are currently six VTCs in Namibia, and the idea is to establish such centres in all 14 regions.
Her visit to the Kunene Region started with a meeting with the regional governor Angelika Muharukua to discuss the need for the establishment of such an educational institution.
Ndjoze-Ojo joined the governor on a trip to Koako Otavi south of Opuwo to get first-hand experience of a planned green scheme project started as part of the governor's initiative to develop the area and work towards food security in the region.
Kaoko Otavi is situated about 70 kilometres south of Opuwo and has a natural fountain that has been supplying water for many years now. The South African government, as far back as 1966, sank several boreholes in the direct vicinity of Kaoko Otavi. Some of these boreholes were equipped with hand pumps that are still in use.
I joined the governor because the area is very dry and I thought that maybe the vocational training centre will also benefit from an area where there is water, Ndjoze-Ojo said.
The idea is also to contextualise the VTCs as many people here take up plumbing, bricklaying or other relevant training to work in the construction industry.
The deputy minister said while in the Erongo Region she will look at how to incorporate training in mining skills as there are many mines operating in that region.
Ndjoze-Ojo will also meet with other relevant role-players in vocational training education system in the various regions like managers of training facilities.
When asked about the prospects of such an initiative in the Kunene Region, the minister said people are suffering from drought here; we want to train people here so they can cope with the conditions.
Although there is no timeframe for the establishment of the centre, Ndjoze-Ojo stressed that the ministry is working as fast as possible.
The haste with which it is being done does not mean the regional VTCs will be of a lower standard. The deputy minister stressed that it will be on par with the VTC in Windhoek and other regions to prevent prospective students flocking to the capital because Windhoek is better equipped.
Ndjoze-Ojo will return to Windhoek on 28 July.