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Covid-19 not holding Ongwediva business couple back

Covid-19 not holding Ongwediva business couple back

Maria David


WHILE many establishments continue to close due to Covid-19, local printing business Kretuva in Ongwediva defeats all odds by extending its operations to various towns in the North.


When owners Elizabeth and Chris Iileka in 2019 opened the doors of the first shop in Ongwediva, the couple then told Informanté of their dream to expand the business to all northern towns by 2025.


The dynamic duo proved good for their word, with operations already running in Ondangwa, Eenhana and Outapi.
“Our next stop is Tsumeb,” Elizabeth Iileka told Informanté recently.


Covid-19 Ongwediva business local printing business Kretuva
MOTIVATED: Young couple Elizabeth and Chris Iileka, pictured with Ongwediva Mayor Taarah Shalyefu, continue to create employment despite Covid-19. Photo: File


“It’s not easy running a printing business, but we managed to keep going.”


She said the reason for expanding to other towns is to create employment for Namibian youths.


According to United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) data, Namibia, with one of the youngest populations in Africa, could reach a staggering 50.30% youth unemployment rate by the end of 2021.


So far, Kretuva has 15 youths employed at their four shops.
Iileka said they hope to have opened close to five shops and created about 50 jobs for the youth by the end of 2022.
She said 2021 was indeed a slow year for business but it motivated them to think out of the box.


“As a team, we know how businesses are struggling to keep afloat, but we made sure that none of our employees’ jobs were affected and we shared the profit we made with our workers,” she said.


Iileka urged the youth to work hard and not wait on the government to always provide, but rather meet them halfway.
“Remain focused, determined and motivated to thrive in these difficult times,” she advised.


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