“We Should be Driving Employment”– TaylorPosted: 2014-12-08
A well-known professor has expressed concern that the labour force participation rate of 55 percent is “abysmally low” given 25 years of Namibia’s comparative peace and political stability. According to the Fourth National Development Plan (NDP4), at the end of the 2013 financial year, Namibia employed approximately 409 353 persons out of an active labour force of 737 770 people.
“To my mind, these numbers and our projection are frightening and graphically tell the story of our dilemma and the urgency for considerable, substantial and massive transformation in the currently mindset, education policy, delivery strategy, programme content and execution,” said Professor Earle Taylor, the deputy vice-chancellor at the International University of Management.
Namibia’s unemployment rate at the end of the NDP3 cycle in 2013 was at 44.5 percent, meaning 328 417 persons were not in the job market, while about 40.4 percent or 338 831 of them would be jobless by 2019. Speaking at the launch of the Association of Private Higher Education Institutions in Namibia (APHEIN) on Monday, Taylor said Namibia should not be focusing on unemployment, but should rather be driving employment.
“We should be looking on the positive side (labour participation and not labour unparticipating). And if we do, we should be thinking on how we can add another 150 000 to 200 000 more persons or at least 40 000 net each year by the end of 2019,” he said.
Projections are that by the end of the NDP4 cycle by 2019, Namibia will have a labour force participation rate of 59 percent, which is 4 percent more than the 2013 figure – meaning approximately 500 000 persons employed, assuming a 2.2 percent net average growth in population. He said there is a need to realise that the education system the country is propelling is wrongly tilted and going contrary to what is expected. Adding that it is too much tilted towards public sector content, output, delivery modality and execution.