Youth must lead struggle against poverty and unemployment

File photo.
File photo.
Image: Sibongile Ngalwa

Former Indian prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee once said: “Empowerment is best served through rapid economic growth with rapid social change.”

I recalled his words as I looked around and tried to understand why the unemployment rate continues to rise in our country. As much as the government has a role to play in creating jobs, as young people we also need to get out of our shells and make things happen for us.

We can’t continue to be a hopeless nation that is angry about what is unfolding in the country. We need to stand up. Most of our young people have given up on finding economic freedom, and this just worsens the situation.

Last year, my friend, Lucrate Ubisi, used his computer science skills and created an online portal for people to upload the biographical and academic details so that a database of profiles could be created, which would be sent to various local employers and funders. This would enable them to choose  from the list candidates for possible employment and economic empowerment.

This was done so that if there could be a shopping mall development in Manyeleti, for example, he would liaise with the employers and shops, send them a single folder containing the details of all the unemployed youth so that recruitment processes could be simplified.

This would help both the potential employers and the unemployed young people as it would save time and resources. Ubisi’s idea was commendable as some of the people in our areas are not aware of various economic opportunities. He then asked some people to share the link on their social media platforms.

This was done countless times but the unemployed young people ignored the posts in their numbers. How do people not care about themselves? How are we going to develop if we are mentally defeated? The vicious cycle of poverty and unemployment will never end for as long as the youth just sits and does nothing. May we all rise and work together to push back the frontiers of poverty.

Malphia Honwane, eManyeleti, Mpumalanga

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