DTA Youth League wants VTC decision reversed

27 Jan 2014 17:40pm
WINDHOEK, 27 JAN (NAMPA) - The DTA of Namibia Youth League has called for a decision by the Namibia Students’ Financial Assistance Fund (NSFAF) to cease financial assistance for students studying at Vocational Training Centres (VTCs), to be reversed.
The youth league called on Minister of Education David Namwandi to withdraw the decision in a media statement issued by DTA Youth League Secretary-General (SG) Bensen Katjirijova on Monday.
Local media reports last week quoted NSFAF Head of Secretariat Hilya Nghiwete as saying VTCs have “never” been part of the fund’s mandate as they are not institutions of higher learning.
She said discussions on how to implement the withdrawal are ongoing.
“Government must embark on an urgent re-evaluation of the role VTCs and Vocational Education and Training (VET) play in developing an individual’s skills and how these institutions can decrease unemployment,” Katjirijova said in the statement.
He went on to say the Swapo-Party-led government “does not regard VTCs as institutions of higher education, which indicates the low level of priority afforded to this crucial aspect of education”.
The statement also said no alternative financing structure has allegedly been put in place by Government.
“The majority of young Namibians who will be embarking on and returning to studies at VTCs across the country will not be able to gain financial support from Government,” he stated.
He said as the majority of young Namibians do not have the financial means to undertake tertiary studies, more young people will be forced onto the streets and into unemployment with little chance of a decent future.
“Namibia needs infrastructure development in order to extend the provision of basic services to all its citizens, therefore the country urgently needs artisans like plumbers, electricians and carpenters,” Katjirijova said.
The statement further said the DTA of Namibia aims to prioritise VET through its Education Policy, and raise it to a level associated with tertiary education.
The party also sees VET as an important means to address unemployment in Namibia, Bensen indicated.