Consultations On Vocational Training End Well

Representatives of the Namibia Training Authority, the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Namibia Employers Federation, Namibia Manufacturers Association, Namibia Institute for Mining and Technology and the Namibia Qualification Authority met this week in Windhoek to discuss various important issues pertaining to vocational education and training, including the sector skills plan.

At the opening of the discussion forum Executive Director of the Namibia Institute for Public Administration and Management (NIPAM) Professor Josef Diescho said Namibia needs more vocational training centres if it is to realise Vision 2030. “If you go to places where they understand planning better, Germany and such places, you will see that there are more training entities than universities, because by definition, my friends, universities are for a few, they are for those who can afford to go and sit and reason, for those who are lazy enough to go and study philosophy to question why life is called life,” he said, sparking good humoured laughter from the delegates.

Diescho says the intention behind the creation of the NTA was to create an environment, a modern environment, in which sustainable development issues can be understood and dealt with. “In fact universities don’t really create jobs, technical colleges create jobs, but for some reason because of our background we were told that only failures go to technical colleges,” he said. “Only those who cannot make it to Unam can go to technical colleges, only those who cannot think and reason can go to technical colleges. Wrong, wrong, wrong,” he stressed.

According to Professor Diescho if one looks at the history of the development of nations, the people who created opportunities for sustainable development in all spheres of national life are those who created them with their own hands. “Those who created the first aeroplane did not go to university, many people who created what we enjoy today did not go to university,” Diescho emphasised. He said in order to aance the development agenda as Namibians we will have to become self- reliant, self-directed, self-affirming, self-sustainable in order to improve the environment for those who create things in life. The acting NTA Acting chief executive, Ester Nghipondoka, said the country’s economic growth and progress depend crucially on the availability of a skilled workforce.

“But, for our country to accelerate its economic development and increase the productive capacity of our industries, all stakeholders in vocational education and training need to collaborate and cooperate towards developing a vocational education and training system, which provides people with the skills needed by our industry, and which will provide our citizens with access to employment,” she said. Nghipondoka further said the NTA has made significant strides towards re-engineering a new vocational education and training regime for our country.

“Some of these milestones include the following. The phasing-in of the Competency-Based Education and Training (CBET) approach to replace the old modular assessment arrangements and the piloting of recognition of prior learning towards establishing a national system under which to recognise and certify prior learning,” she added. Other milestones include the gazetting and implementation of the regulations for the registration of vocational education and training providers in December 2012 and the gazetting and implementation of the vocational education and training levy in January this year, of which imposition is to start on the 1st of April this year,” she added.

Source : New Era