Youth employment strategy in Zambia: President Michael Sata will soon launch a national youth employment strategy aimed at mitigating youth unemployment in Zambia, Youth and Sports Minister Chishimba Kambwili has announced. Mr Kambwili said the document which had a holistic approach on how to tackle youth unemployment was being printed at the Government Printers in Lusaka.
He said this in Livingstone at the weekend when he paid a courtesy call on Livingstone Institute of Business and Engineering Studies (LIBES) acting Principal Daniel Mwale and other senior members of staff.
"We have come up with a youth employment strategy which is a holistic approach and President Sata will soon launch it. Right now, the document is being printed at Government Printers and once printing is completed, the President will unveil the strategy and the document will later be taken to all corners of the country to try and reduce youth unemployment," he said.
He said there was need for concerted efforts in fighting youth unemployment as the Government alone may not manage to do it.
Mr Kambwili said the Government was encouraging all trade schools and youth resource centres across the country to take up grade nine dropouts to train them in various skills.
"Before the Patriotic Front (PF) came into power, what used to be youths training centres were a big joke.
The MMD Government used to put up a one by three classroom block with few chairs and called such facilities as youth resource centres without carpentry and brick laying tools," Mr Kambwili said.
He said the PF Government had since changed the scenario as it had come up with proper model infrastructure for all youth resource centres which would be accredited to the Technical Education, Vocational and Entrepreneurship Training Authority (TEVETA) so that graduates would have artisan qualifications.
Mr Kambwili said the new youth resource centres would be fully fledged colleges with all employees put on Government payroll.
"Under the previous Government, they used to depend on earnings from youth resource centres to pay workers and as a result they never used to attract quality instructors.
"What we have done is that we are putting up modern infrastructure in all existing structures so that we can start proper enrolment and recruitment of lectures by the end of this year," he said.
He said some centres would be attached to big colleges like LIBES to help build capacity which would in turn help to address youth unemployment.
By Brian Hatyoka
The Times of Zambia/27/01/2014