10,000 youth benefit from national skills development programme

15Jan 2018
The Guardian
10,000 youth benefit from national skills development programme

OVER 10,000 youth from higher learning institutions have benefited from the national skills development programme, initiated by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) for the past two years.

Deputy Minister, Prime Minister’s Office Labour, Employment, Youth and Disabled, Stella Ikupa

Deputy Minister, Prime Minister’s Office Labour, Employment, Youth and Disabled, Stella Ikupa revealed this over the weekend when speaking at a function to wrap-up the just-ended 'Students' Entrepreneurship Day' held at the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM).

She said currently the PMO has three programmes that include apprenticeship programme, internship programme and recognition of prior learning skills that help youth obtain required skills in the competitive labour market.

According to Ikupa, the internship programme was designed to enhance employment skills of the labour force, assist graduates to obtain skills required in the labour market and practice what have learned at their colleges or universities.

The deputy minister encouraged graduates to participate in the internship component, because of having diverse opportunities.

“It is more practical and a participant gets more working experience that will increase his or her employment,” the minister stressed.

Ikupa, however, said: “Entrepreneurship and innovation cannot be addressed in isolation and can no longer be ignored in our country due to its contribution in supporting start-ups and enterprises development.”

She also suggested the need for developing entrepreneurial universities that support the birth and growth of start-ups and “I’m looking forward to seeing university spin-off firms as result of your research outputs.”

“This is possible if we strengthen our collaboration and we are ready to work with the universities and private sector to develop strategies that will be beneficial to all,” she said.

For his part, director of the University of Dar es Salaam Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre (UDIEC) Prof Abraham Temu said: “The main goal of the student’s entrepreneurship day was just to help students meet with Tanzanian most successful entrepreneurs to inspire students to become entrepreneurs, learn from them and understand what is required once they need to be entrepreneurs.”

“As UDSM we are very glad for student’s entrepreneurship day, the response was good, we have received more than 400 students from high learning institutions across the country who have participated,” he said.

Also during the event, the deputy minister, Prime Minister’s Office Labour, Employment, Youth and Disabled has presented awards for three winners who have won Business Plan Competition that was organised by UDIEC.

He said Jensen Energy group emerged the overall winner and received Laptop and 1m/-, while the second winner, Mama Africa group received 1m/- and the 3rd winner AfriCow company received 800,000/- and the prize was presented to them by the deputy minister.

“In September last year we advertised the Business Plan Competition to all students at UDSM to encourage them to develop sustainable business ideas potential for employment creation and we manage to get 10 students who participated in this competition,” he said.

“We use social media, UDIEC’s website to ensure all students participate in the competition but the response was very small,” he explained.

“As UDIEC we will ensure the winners get training to improve their businesses,” he said.