THE European Union (EU) Ambassador to Zimbabwe, Philippe van Damme, has urged the country to continuously strive to churn out graduates who are equipped with life skills as a prescriptive measure to counter rampant unemployment.
By Everson Mushava
Addressing the third edition of The Space in Harare on Monday, Van Damme urged the country’s universities to produce “well-informed” and “innovative” youths.
“The universities are lagging behind the astronomical pace of technological initiatives. The technology taught at school will be outdated the moment one finishes tertiary education. There will be new technologies at the workplaces. Youths need to be taught to cope with life skills,” he said.
Senior director, International Law and Policy at the International Secretariat of Amnesty International, Tawanda Mutasah, urged youths to achieve excellence in whatever they do.
“It’s not about the title or nature of work one does. As such, if you are a photographer, thrive to be the best in the game,” he said.
The London-based lawyer urged youths to challenge for power in all its forms, as they are usually on the receiving end of decisions that are made by people in authority.
“He who feels it knows it. All forms of power are self-preserving. Challenging power needs selflessness. You say it’s a drop in the ocean, but the ocean is made up of drops.”
International Monetary Fund executive director Christian Beddies said the obtaining economic situation was the major reason behind a bloated informal sector.
He appealed to the Zimbabwean government not to destroy the sector.
“It is not desirable to destroy the informal sector, hence, the government should quickly formalise the (informal) sector so as to promote productivity which in turn widens the revenue collection base through taxation,” he
Meanwhile, Labour and Economic Development Research Institute of Zimbabwe representative Naome Chakanya said formalising the informal economy should not be construed as only collecting taxes, but putting the right conditions for them to flourish.
She called on government to address four key issues within the informal sector, namely service provision, social protection and putting in place right policies that promote their operations.
“Authorities should ensure that there are proper water and sanitation health through providing toilets and other amenities including sheds,” Chakanya said.