THE implementation of the Bank of Namibia (BoN) initiative to support the Namibia Training Authority’s (NTA) apprenticeship programme has started.
BoN and NTA signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in March 2019.
In the MoU, BoN has agreed to support the programme over a three-year period to cover the cost of 50 apprenticeships in the priority areas of agriculture, tourism and auto-mechanic.
Kazembire Zemburuka, BoN spokesperson, stated that tourism and agriculture were selected because of their identification as priority areas in the national development plans such as Fifth National Development Plan and Harambee Prosperity Plan, while auto-mechanic was chosen based on it being an occupation that is likely to bring about self-employment opportunities to interested young people.
The implementation kicked off on Monday, 5 August, with the signing of Memorandum of Agreements (MoAs) between NTA and three participating employers that will provide apprenticeship opportunities in the areas as selected by the Bank.
The three participating employers are Pupkewitz Motors, taking in 14 auto-mechanic artisans, Gondwana Collection Namibia to train 16 tourism (tour guiding) apprentices and Agribusdev for 20 apprentices in agriculture.
During the occasion, Bank of Namibia Director of Strategic Communications and Financial Sector Development, Dr Emma Haiyambo, commended participating employers for demonstrating an interest in the Technical and Vocational Education Training sector, which is as an enabler of economic growth through skills development and employment creation while at the same time contributing to Namibia’s industrialisation drive.
Speaking on behalf of the Namibia Training Authority, the Chief Executive Officer, Jerry Beukes, said: “The Bank of Namibia’s support is an investment in our country’s most important resource – its people, and the agreements signed will take the apprenticeship initiative a step further as the scope now purposely includes the agricultural sector.”
The apprentices will be assigned to experienced mentors to induct them and train them on-the-job in their areas of specialisation. Employers practical training will also be complemented by theoretical training at identified Vocational Training Centres for agreed periods. Apprentices will be attached to their respective employers for a period of three years.
The Bank will additionally support the TVET sector through the improvement of qualifications of trainers by offering bursaries to prospective trainers at institutions of higher learning. This is being done with a view to improve the quality of training in the TVET sector.