Windhoek-Minister of Education, Arts and Culture, Katrina Hanse-Himarwa, has dismissed the perception that institutions such as the Namibian College of Open Learning (Namcol) are dumping grounds for failures.
In fact, she said such institutions give a second opportunity and are able to produce high calibre students.
These remarks were read on her behalf by the ministry’s director of planning, Adelheid Awases, during Namcol prize-giving ceremony yesterday where many students performed exceptionally well both in Grade 10 and 12 in 2016.
Best performing learners received awards and cash prizes ranging from N$600 up to N$11 000. The overall best performing Namcol students in Grade 12 received a scholarship by Namcol covering first year registration and tuition fees at any institution of higher learning valued at N$30 000.
A substantial number of companies and businesses joined hands with Namcol to reward learners with prizes, Bank Windhoek being the main sponsor.
Hanse-Himarwa stressed the importance of education, saying it can open doors that otherwise would have stayed closed to improve one’s life and lives of those around them.
“Education has many benefits and a positive impact on our life. An educated person is an asset for any country. In today’s world, human capital is considered the best national resource. On one hand, you can explore better opportunities for yourself, and on the other hand, the entire nation would benefit from your work and contributions,” she noted.
According to her, education plays a central role in poverty eradication.
Further, she said Namibians should become job creators rather than only job seekers, while dispelling the narrative that government is expected to create jobs all the time.
Hence, she says government will continue to create opportunities for self-employment.
She maintained education is the cornerstone of every individual’s development and growth – an indispensable tool for the sound establishment of a good future.
“If you want to reach the top, you will have to endure and work hard. You should refuse to give up. Let nothing and no one deter you in your journey to become a successful citizen, so that you can make a contribution to the success of this country,” she said.
More than 40 000 learners enrolled with Namcol this year alone, making it the biggest educational institution in Namibia.
The Minister said Namcol has the capacity to support national policy design, which is geared towards achieving the provision of education and training opportunities to adult and out-of-school youth in order to mitigate the effects of colonial education.
She said with education, government have the potential to fight poverty, unemployment, HIV/AIDS and general social decay in communities.
“Therefore, as government, we must assume a moot, which will lead from darkness to light, from bondage to liberty, from ignorance to knowledge, from illiteracy to literacy, from failure to success, from hopelessness to hope, from morbidity to ecstasy, from misery to joy,” Hanse-Himarwa noted.