RVTC concerned about local shebeen

05 Aug 2016 08:00am
RUNDU, 05 AUG (NAMPA) – Concern has been raised about the fact that a shebeen is located across the road from the Rundu Vocational Training Centre (RVTC), with fears that it could negatively affect trainees’ studies.
The VTC and 'VIP Bar' are situated approximately three kilometres east of Rundu.
The concern was raised during the institution’s stakeholder meeting held here on Tuesday.
The meeting was attended by representatives of the Ministry of Higher Education, Training and Innovation; Triumphant College; the Trustco Group; Telecom Namibia and Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development; amongst others.
Speaking to Nampa after the event, the centre’s acting manager Suzette von Wielligh said any education and training provider would be concerned if there was a shebeen situated near their institution, amongst others because it makes alcohol more easily available.
“Many of our trainees are 18 years old and above which makes it legal for them to consume alcohol. However, it remains a concern for the vocational centre,” she said.
The Rundu Vocational Training Centre was established in 1991 and at the time the establishment across the road operated as a café.
It was however sold and the new owner turned it into a bar.
Von Wielligh said the period of late adolescence and early adult life is a transitional phase for students where new freedoms, new relationships and adapting to a different environment provide daily challenges on top of the academic challenges of new courses.
“A lot of the students also come from other regions and are away from home for the first time,” she said.
She said the institution meets with the trainees at least once a week to raise awareness about the implications of alcohol consumption. Counselling, she said, can also be offered to trainees that are seen to regularly visit the shebeen.
Contributing to the discussion, the principal of Triumphant College Owen Chiswo Sarayi however said shebeens being situated close to institutions of education “should not be a big concern.”
“Having shebeens close to education institutions is like Namibian culture. This is how we know Namibia and many students have grown up around such establishments. Let’s also not cry and say these things are destructive.
“Let the institution provide entertainment centres and then just put control mechanisms or measures in place,” he said.