30 Sep 2013 12:30
ONGWEDIVA, 30 SEP (NAMPA) Deputy Minister of Youth, National Service, Sports and Culture, Juliette Kavetuna has urged all potential employers countrywide to consider mainstreaming people with disabilities in their workplaces.
Speaking during the official opening of a four-day National Congress of Youth with Disabilities at Ongwediva in the Oshana Region on Monday, Kavetuna said the government is aware of the high unemployment rate amongst youth with disabilities.
We have noted with great concern that some government institutions unfairly discriminate people with disabilities, simply because apparently they do not have the necessary qualifications, despite having experience in certain areas, Kavetuna stated.
This, she said, is a discriminatory approach.
Kavetuna, therefore, called on public and private institutions to start considering special cases and circumstances prevailing when it comes to people with disabilities.
She also suggested that the Education Ministry be encouraged to put more effort to enable people with disabilities to access education easily, as there is a shortage of human capital with disabilities in the country.
Kavetuna also wants to see the media, as an influential and essential agent in the transmission of information to the entire society, to start writing a lot of positive stories of people with disabilities.
Just think of how many people could be informed and how many Namibians could begin to view people with disabilities in a new light, the deputy minister noted.
She, at the same time, commended the University of Namibia (Unam) for establishing a Disability Unit in its establishment, and demanded that this Unam Disability Unit be resourced financially and physically to be able to come up with an outreach programme.
This outreach programme, Kavetuna said, should encourage students with disabilities in secondary schools to study hard and to join tertiary education institutions.
Various youth with disabilities organisations in Namibia are participating in the congress to discuss among others, issues related to youth with disabilities.
The congress is also anticipated to elect the first members of the National Executive Board for Youth with Disabilities in Namibia.
The congress ends on Thursday.