Lilongwe, A cross section of Malawians on Wednesday witnessed the realization of one of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) key campaign promises of training young people in technical, vocational and entrepreneurial skills.
The Bingu International Convention Centre (BICC) in Lilongwe was the host of this colourful event.
There was celebration and ululation in the giant Hall at BICC by the 697 graduating students, parents and guardians soon after the brain behind the introduction of the Community Technical Colleges, Professor Peter Mutharika entered the hall that was filled to capacity.
Speaking before the students received their Level1 and 2 Technical Entrepreneur and Vocational Education Training (TEVET) Certificates, President Mutharika urged the students to be proud of themselves and Malawi.
He asked them to use the skills in the development of the country.
Mutharika said the purpose of the colleges is to provide employable skills to the youth as a way of creating decent jobs for them and many Malawians so that the country develops.
Community Colleges and the skills development program are important pillars of our vision and creation of a skilled labor force is a necessary step towards the development of Malawi. No country develops without a skilled labor force Mutharika said.
The president further went on to say that what one learns is not important if it is not put to use.
The training you have received is not an end in itself. It is not what you learn that matters but what you do with it. Show this country that you have the capability to make a difference he said.
Speaking earlier, representative for the graduating students Dolphrine Ligola thanked the president for introducing the community colleges saying many youths have benefited from it.
The skills we have acquired will help us live a self economically reliant life and create jobs for other people, she said.
And in their remarks, Chairman of TEVET Authority Board Gilbert Chilinde, and Minister of Labor, Youth and Manpower Development, Francis Kasaila hailed the role the community technical colleges are playing in imparting technical skills to the youth.
Kasaila said in order to increase the number of intake in the community colleges, government has constructed five more colleges.
Reacting to the development after receiving their certificate, some of the students expressed happiness saying it has opened the door to future opportunities.
Yamikani Mulinde, who graduated with a certificate in Carpentry and Joinery, thanked the president for the idea of community colleges saying it will make him an employer.
Let me thank the President and the government for the idea. I had nothing to think of after I completed my secondary school. But now I can confidently say I will open my shop and make money he said.
Community Technical Colleges, a brain child of President Peter Mutharika and his DPP led government was one of the key campaign pledges.
So far 11 Community Technical Colleges have been constructed with the remaining 17 to be finished before 2019, according to labour minister Kasaila.
Source: Malawi News Agency � MANA