Sunyani, Sept. 15, GNA – The mismatch of skills is contributing greatly to rising youth unemployment in the country, Madam Justina Owusu-Banahene, the Bono Regional Minister has said.
She asked institutions of higher learning in the country to collaborate with the business community and develop curricula that would churn out required products for the labour market.
“Many young people have been found to be gaining tertiary qualification than ever before, but young people are not gaining qualification relevant to changing labour market”, she stated.
Speaking at the inauguration of the Bono Regional Youth Parliament of the National Youth Authority (NYA) in Sunyani, Mad. Owusu-Banahene said all levels of education ought to be smarter and teach academic skills through internships and apprenticeships to help young people to acquire gainful employment.
The Youth Parliament is an initiative enshrined in the 2010 National Youth Policy of the NYA and aimed at providing the youth with an official platform where young people learn how to express their views, give constructive criticisms, and above all participate effectively in decision-making processes on various developmental issues at the local level.
Mad. Owusu-Banahene indicated youth unemployment and under-employment remained daunting national developmental challenges, but added the government had prioritized that to provide the youth with numerous opportunities for employment.
Some of the interventions of the government, she explained were the introduction of the Nation Builders Corps (NaBCo) to provide jobs for the youth and at the same time helped them to acquire necessary working experience, One-District-One-Factory (1D1F) to broaden employment opportunities for the youth and the Planting for Food and Jobs (PfFJs) to make agriculture more attractive to young people.
Mad. Owusu-Banahene identified agribusiness, entrepreneurship, apprenticeship, construction, tourism, and sports as key sectors that could offer increased employment opportunities for the Ghanaian youth.
The Regional Minister underlined the need for more investments in career guidance and counselling, work-based learning, coaching, and mentoring to equip young people with the relevant skills required for work.
Hajia Fati Bamba, the Bono Regional Director of the NYA said the Youth Parliament offered an opportunity to the youth in the region and the entire nation to express their views and contribute to national legislation and decision-making processes.
She advised the participants to eschew partisan politics, and instead, focus on issues that would push the development of the region forward.