Employment eludes qualified artisan

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Selma Ikela

WINDHOEK – A proverb that says, “education is the key to success”, seems to not hold the same meaning for Megameno Amukwa, 24, a boilermaker and welder, who graduated from the Namibian Institute of Mining and Technology.
Amukwa found it hard landing a job after graduating in 2016 despite having submitted copies of his Curriculum Vitae (CV) with various companies that called for applicants to apply for vacant posts.

While in high school, he had admired and was inspired by graduates from his technical vocational centre, who had at the time landed good jobs in the mines and were ‘living the life’.

After graduating, it was a different tale for him. “I have been submitting and applying for vacancies but there has been no response,” said a dejected Amukwa as he recalls the various job interviews that eluded him.
Amukwa landed a job six months after graduating and agreed on a salary with his employer but at month end, he found himself not being paid. He had to beg his employer for his salary to pay rent but he was only given half his money. He eventually left the job because of non-payment.

Earlier this year, New Era reported that Namibia has 67 000 unemployed graduates hoping to get a job in the field they studied. Deputy Director in the Ministry of Higher Education, Training and Innovation Nhlanhla Lupahla revealed this during a public dialogue on perspectives of unemployed university graduates.

After leaving his job, Amukwa decided to register his company Boys and Son Trading Enterprise, to use the skills he acquired from the vocational school. His company offers; welding services, logistics, renovation, alarm installations and CCTV installation amongst others. Amukwa who said business is doing well, landed a couple of jobs by advertising on social media.

“For now, I am living better than when I had a job. It motivates me to go get more clients, finish the job on time so that I can get money to pay my rent. I also support my grandparents,” remarked Amukwa.

Amukwa added that with the income from his business, he bought tools. With no capital to start with, it is difficult to have the needed equipment and Amukwa hopes to get capital boost to purchase advance tools, which will give his business a lift. He specifically need a MIG welding machine which cost about N$23 000. Once his business gets a boost, he believes he will not look for a formal job.

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