By Thomas Chidamba
Lands, Agriculture, Water and Rural Resettlement minister, Anxious Masuka has said government has no responsibility to “spoon-feed” thousands of graduates churned out annually by universities and colleges around the country.
He scoffed at an unemployed agriculture graduate Dickson Kubvakacha’s solo demonstration against the country’s high unemployment rate which has reduced graduates into paupers.
Kubvakacha is the founder and chairperson of the Coalition of Agricultural Graduates of Zimbabwe (COAGZ).
Masuka felt obliged to comment after a picture of Kubvakacha selling sweets on a crowded dusty street in Mbare went viral on social media platforms, dismissing it as an attention-seeking stunt.
“I want to think that this is a joke and that the comrade in question (Kubvakacha) will immediately remove his social media page.
“Last year, I personally addressed COAGZ and Kubvakacha was present where I outlined the procedure for one to apply for land,” Masuka said.
The minister said the government provides graduates with opportunities to be taken up by those willing to do so.
“I also highlighted numerous opportunities that any agricultural graduate has in the agricultural space.
“It cannot, then, be the Zimbabwean government’s responsibility to spoon-feed the individual.
“We create opportunities, and it is up to the individual to take advantage of those opportunities or not.
“This is extremely disappointing, to say the least,” Masuka said.
Kubvakacha said he was not an attention seeker.
“As one of the 35 000 unemployed agricultural professionals in Zimbabwe, we have been excluded from government programmes aimed at turning around national fortunes through agriculture.
“We are struggling to be relevant after receiving training,” Kubvakacha said.
“I am supposed to be in the fields, where my heart is, but our chance is yet to come.
“I rented (agricultural land) twice and encountered bitter experiences.”