By Petronella Sibeene WINDHOEK Ten learners from different schools across the country last Friday received awards for the Business Orators’ League for Secondary Schools. The awards in the Junior Category went to Maren Thomson, Josy Nghipandwa, Vivien Ojo, Ndamwena Nangombe and Rozanna Schmidt while in the Senior Category, Elmar Burger, Guengo Sateco, Clarence Kavejandja, Remy Ngamije and Antoinette Fourie received awards. Delightfully, the deserving ten presented before the audience their communication skills and received certificates. Throughout 2005, learners across the country entered this competition and did presentations supported by the use of visual aids. At this event that gives recognition to individuals who use communication in a creative and innovative way as an integral part of their functions, Minister of Information and Broadcasting Netumbo Nandi-Ndaitwah emphasised the need for school-going children to start shaping their communication skills that are paramount in the labour market. Even those who have interest in pursuing careers as entrepreneurs, Ndaitwah said, would benefit because the ability to communicate at all levels is key to success and business. The communication skills acquired and techniques mastered by participating in the Business Orators’ League will come in handy in future especially in the job-seeking field and as such, society must encourage youths to develop their skills further. Currently, subjects such as communication skills are treated as a job to be done by teachers in schools. According to the minister, this should not be seen as a responsibility of teachers only but all influential members of society must invest in the future of youths. For a young country like Namibia, it is important that people speak up and participate in the affairs of their communities to ensure that democracy flourishes. “If their voices are silenced, democracy dies and dictatorship and autocratic dispensations take root,” she warned. Applauding the learners for demonstrating works that are necessary and suitable for the job market, Business Communicator of the Year 2005 and Managing Director of Namdeb Inge Zaamwani acknowledged the talent Namibian learners have, adding that society must create platforms where these young people can develop their potential further and popularise their views. Considering that gender equality has gained popularity in any democratic country, Zaamwani was overjoyed by the 60 per cent girl representation in this competititon. “This is evident that girls have potential and must be given a platform to express themselves. Remember, they are capable of making a meaningful contribution.” She reminded learners that both verbal and written characteristics are crucial in any business. And for a country like Namibia that is navigating its way through economic development, it is imperative that learners strive to become ultimate communicators. She said: “If Namibia gets successful communicators, we will have many successful businesses, institutions, organisations and therefore, a prosperous and flourishing country.” Zaamwani urged all business operators in the country to design their communication strategies carefully. This is the common denominator found in all successful businesses or companies. The event was sponsored by Metropolitan Namibia and Bank Windhoek.
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