Youths urged to seize empowerment opportunities

By Ruth Chayinda

Youth, Sports and Arts Minister ELVIS NKANDU says government has set up a number of opportunities that can alleviate youth unemployment in the country.

Mr. NKANDU has urged youths to tap into the opportunities that are in the Ministry of Youth and Sports, so that they can contribute to the transformation of the  economy.

He says the Ministry is also providing bursaries to vulnerable families so that they can further their education and acquire skills to better their lives.

Mr. NKANDU was speaking during the National Youth Indaba in Lusaka.

He further said government will soon be launching the National Youth Policy as consultations have been concluded and is currently undergoing validation.

MEANWHILE, Mr. NKANDU disclosed that the ministry received over 36, 000 applications under the internship programme against the 2000 that was targeted.

He however said following scrutiny of the applications, it was observed that some applicants made numerous applications to different districts.

And Local Government and Rural Development Minister, GARY NKOMBO urged youths to take advantage of the Constituency Development Fund -CDF- components on skills training, loans, grants to transform their well being.

Mr. NKOMBO said the youths are primary beneficiaries of the various components but called for a change in mindsets if the policy is to transform their lives.

MEANWHILE, Education Minister DOUGLAS SYAKALIMA said government is determined to invest in the human capital through provision of free education.

Mr. SYAKALIMA said the increase in the number of pupils going to school shows the impact that the free education policy has brought to the sector.

And UNESCO Coordinator in Zambia ALICE SAILI said the UN system continues to support government to address the youth unemployment.

Ms. SAILI said  nine agencies have come together to support government in meeting the aspirations of the youths in the country.

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