Work experience should not be prerequisite to obtain employment‚ says NYDA chairman

National Youth Development Agency Chairman Sifiso Mtsweni has called for work experience to no longer be a requirement to obtain employment, writes Olebogeng Molatlhwa.

Delivering the board’s message of support on Saturday during the official Youth Day commemorations in Ventersdorp‚ North West‚ Mtsweni said young people were already hampered by a lack of opportunities to gain such experience.

Addressing President Jacob Zuma‚ who is to deliver the keynote address‚ Mtsweni said: “Young people are asking you that the time to use experience to get a job must come to an end. How can you get experience when we are out there?“

“Young people are asking you that the time to use experience to get a job must come to an end. How can you get experience when we are out there?“

Mtsweni also said the NYDA wanted 40% of the workforce of private companies and government departments to employ youth graduates.

The board’s pleas come as unemployment — particularly affecting the youth — has reached unprecedented levels.

This is despite various initiatives‚ at national‚ provincial and local level‚ to kick-start the economy with the aim of assisting young people to gain experience and find employment.

Zuma mentioned the Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) as one of these.

The president did acknowledge that government efforts were made difficult by a slump in the economy.

“We are going through a tough time as a result of the recession‚ which has caused a slump in the economy‚” said Zuma.

“We are going through a tough time as a result of the recession‚ which has caused a slump in the economy‚” said Zuma.

He said the NYDA would spend R72 million on economic participation which would benefit 18‚000 aspiring young entrepreneurs.

The board would also open four new branches in Ekurhuleni in Gauteng and Newcastle in KwaZulu-Natal.

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