Activist shoots down TIPEEG
Addressing a gathering at Omaalala Village in the Ondangwa Constituency last week, Oshana Regional Youth Forum chairman Aphraim Nekongo said the prominence being given to TIPEEG makes people forget about the longer term agenda, especially when it comes to job creation.
“Yes, it may work. It is a short term push but we cannot continue to spend N$14 billion every year. Government needs to address long-term job creation and this should include a sound industrial policy. The growing budget deficit because of spending on TIPEEG must be handled with care,” he said.
Nekondgo lauded Government for setting money aside for employment creation, but lamented that most employment seems to be of a temporary nature.
“TIPEEG is accused of being a hastily conceived, poorly-structured short-term solution showing an enormous panic and desperation on Government’s side,” he said.
Nekongo added that TIPEEG objectives are heavily compromised. He said programmes are initiated with taxpayers’ money that ends up being accessed by the initiators in key government positions, while the offices of the regional governors “that are in direct touch with the rural grassroots were not even widely consulted on TIPEEG”.
Nekongo said various ministries have failed to implement TIPEEG projects across the country, a fact that, according to him, underlines a lax attitude in fighting unemployment in the country.
Turning to the youth, Nekongo urged young people not to consider themselves as passive beneficiaries but as equal and effective partners.
“Our aspirations extend far beyond jobs. We as youth also want a seat at the table – a real voice in shaping the policies that shape our lives. The time has come to integrate youth voices more meaningfully into decision-making processes at all levels,” Nekongo said.
He was addressing a gathering jointly organised by the Ministry of Youth, the Oshana Regional Youth Forum and the OYDC (Omaalala Youth Development Centre) to commemorate the International Youth Day.
Designated by the United Nations in 1999, the IYD is commemorated on August 12 each year as an opportunity for governments and other stakeholders to draw attention to youth issues worldwide.
The Omaalala event was attended by constituency councillors Joseph Endjala of Okaku, Abraham Kashiweni of Ondangwa and Andreas Amundjindi of Uukwiyuushona, as well as the regional secretary of the Swapo Party Youth, League Matilde Nakwedhi, the head of the Oshakati MultiPurpose Youth Centre, Albertina Shatona and the chairman of the OYDC, Job Shipululo Amupanda.
After the speeches, the day was further characterised by sports events when ad hoc teams competed in volleyball, tug-of-war and cultural performances.