16 Sep 2013 07:00
GOBABIS, 16 SEP (NAMPA) - The Deputy Minister of Youth, National Service , Sports and Culture, Juliet Kavetuna has pleaded with the Namibian youth to venture into careers that will guarantee them job opportunities and add value to the country as a whole.
She was addressing young people at Gobabis on Thursday during a two-day summit organised to look at ways through which the youth could be empowered economically.
The summit, dubbed as Youth Employment Creation Business Summit was organised by the Gobabis-based Ounongo Technology Centre, which caters mainly for young people through its programmes in information and communication technology (ICT).
Kavetuna said the time has come for Namibian youths to take over in prominent careers which could contribute positively to their personal advancement, and also better serve the country.
To do that, she said, more young people need to take up careers in challenging fields such as medicine, geology, and similar fields of study.
The deputy minister said it was not acceptable that Namibia still relies on countries such as Kenya for registered nurses and Cuba for medical doctors after 23 years of independence.
Only our young people, whom we have entrusted with taking over leadership one day, can change this status quo, she said.
According to Kavetuna, young people are often lured by the superficial glamour provided by careers in commerce and administration, and would often venture into such fields, which do not necessarily require intensive special training.
We need our young people to venture more in the fields of veterinary and similar careers. Is there a reason why over 90 per cent of qualified vets here in Namibia are from outside the country? Where are our own people? Let us change that and prosper in our own country, said the deputy minister.
Kavetuna further called for the unification of Government programmes targeting the youth, noting that currently programmes are often repetitive in nature as no proper co-ordination exists.
Today if I am a young person, I can get training through the ministry of trade and industry. The same training is offered by the governors office in my region and again by the Ministry of Youth. We need to coordinate these activities so that they do not become repetitive in nature, she said.
According to the Omaheke Regional Poverty Profile of 2004 which is the latest comprehensive form of research carried out in the region only 54 per cent of all persons 15 years old and above are in the active labour force.
Slightly over half (51 per cent) of those employed in the Omaheke Region work in agriculture, hunting and forestry sectors, where women make up a mere 26 per cent of employees.