By Blackson Mkupatira MANA

The Director of Technical and Vocational Training in the Ministry of Labour, Richard Chirwa, has underscored the importance of equipping young people in the country with technical skills if the Malawi Vision 2063 is to be attained.

Speaking in Dedza District during the graduation ceremony of 130 youths who underwent a four-month skills development training in various fields Chirwa said the country cannot achieve vision 2063 if youths, who make up 80 percent of the population, are not capacitated to contribute effectively.

“The enabler number five of MW2063 talks about human capital development. This is because government is aware that we cannot achieve agricultural commercialization and productivity, industrialization or urbanization as a country without developing the skills of the people first,” he said.

The Director said it was against this background that his ministry is implementing various interventions and programmes aimed at empowering youths through skills development so that they could be productive citizens and be self-reliant economically.

He expressed gratitude to World Relief Malawi for training the youths from Traditional Authority Kaphuka, saying the initiative has come at the right time when the country is in the process of building the capacity of its citizenry.

On her part, World Relief Malawi Country Director, Matilda Matitha said they decided to intervene after noting that many youths in the area were dropping out of school because of poverty whereas some were unemployed because they failed to access higher education.

“We started looking for resources to equip them with vocational skills so that they could be self-reliant economically and also employ others who are in the same position they were in,” she said.

Technical, Entrepreneurial and Vocational Education and Training (TEVETA) Director of Training Programmes Modesto Gomani said he was optimistic that the graduants will make a difference in the country as they have received quality training from the institution.

One of the graduates, Chikondi Kalimo, a form three dropout who underwent a training in welding and fabrication said she has been set for life with the skills she has gained from the training.

The youths were trained in bakery and confectionery, brick laying, carpentry and joinery, tailoring and fashion design, and welding and fabrication, by TEVETA through World Relief Malawi with funding from Switzerland and the Netherland Church.

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