Sioka brushes off government critics

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By Obrein Simasiku

WINDHOEK – The Minister of Labour and Social Welfare, Doreen Sioka, has hit back at government critics who claim government has done nothing to develop the nation.

She said some people have a tendency of claiming that government has not done anything even when there is irrefutable and tangible development.

She bashed these critics and told them “to lick the wall”.

Sioka said this last Friday during a staff meeting in which she reflected on achievements and challenges faced by the ministry in 2014 in which a number of programmes were to be implemented.

The implementation of the Employment Service Act, the tabling of Employment Creation Commission Bill in Parliament, the conducting of Social Expenditure Review, reviewing of the National Employment Policy, drafting of Employment Guidelines, implementation of an Employment Integrated Information System and the finalisation of the report of the wages commission on domestic workers were among the programmes set for 2014.

Sioka further expressed her happiness with the 2013 National Employment Policy, stating that the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare has established an implementation committee to oversee the overall implementation of the National Employment Policy, which she ranked as one of the accomplished objectives of the ministry.

“I must emphasize that it is without doubt this committee has a lot to do, given the country’s unemployment rate that continues to be a challenge. However, I urge the committee to work in the best interest of the Namibian people in order to achieve their mandate,” further stated Sioka.

Moreover, she charged that high unemployment rate among the youth and women still remains a big challenge, adding that many former government employees are swimming “in the well of poverty” without benefits.

“They are without benefits that can enable them to provide basic essentials for their families such as healthcare and decent homes,” she explained.

Widespread poverty and extreme income inequality were among the highlighted challenges.

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