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Tuitubou: Government Aims to Increase Tradespeople

  Government is committed to increase qualified and skilled trades people, says Minister for Youth and Sports, Laisenia Tuitubou. Mr Tuitubou said that there is a shortage of trades’ people
20 Jan 2017 12:15
Tuitubou: Government Aims to Increase Tradespeople
Minister for Youth and Sports, Laisenia Tuitubou (garlanded), at the at the inaugural ‘Make It Count Expo’ at the Warwick Fiji Resort and Spa on Tuesday. Photo: Warwick Fiji Resort and Spa

 

Government is committed to increase qualified and skilled trades people, says Minister for Youth and Sports, Laisenia Tuitubou.

Mr Tuitubou said that there is a shortage of trades’ people in the local job market.

He said there was a widening gap between white collar and blue collar jobs.

Mr Tuitubou has encouraged unemployed youths who live in rural areas to take advantage of courses offered by the Technical Vocational Education Training (TVET).

“The Fijian Government is committed and has made it a priority to raise the image of TVET in the country, and we hope to entice young men and women into acquiring trade skills,” said Mr Tuitubou.

He addressed youths, stakeholders, landowners, parents and organisers, at Warwick Fiji Resort and Spa during the inaugural “Make It Count Expo” on Tuesday.

Mr Tuitubou said the Expo came at the right time.

Invited university and technical college representatives gathered at the Warwick Fiji Resort and Spa not to compete, but to collaborate in educating youths to achieve qualifications of their choices.

Vodafone ATH Foundation executive, Ambalika Devi, who has been supporting youths from the districts, was present also.

The Foundation has been funding them with its own youth development scheme.

“Our aim is to give back to the community and we have. We will try to meet the changing needs of the people we serve,” Ms Devi said.

The Warwick Fiji Resort and Spa general manager, Brad Downton, said the resort was looking for qualified personnel in specific areas of work.

He said he hoped the Expo would influence youths from nearby villages and communities to take up courses.

“At the moment we are in need of qualified plumbers and this Expo could be the answer, especially when it is dealing with villagers because our resort protocol is to give the nearby villages the first chance of employment,” said Mr Downton.

One hundred and two youths enrolled into various schools of their choices and amongst them was 21-year-old Panapasa Balecala, of Votua Village.  Mr Balecala is a casual employee at the resort.

He was overwhelmed and eager to complete his studies with Australia Pacific Technical College (APTC) after he was accepted.

“I have always wanted to become a journalist, but I am happy to be accepted by APTC in carpentry since my father is a carpenter himself,” said Mr Balecala.

The Roko Tui Nadroga/Navosa,  Viliame Burenivalu, said that this was an ideal opportunity for all concerned.

“This is an opportunity for the districts of Korolevu-i-wai, and Komave as we are backing up the Government’s initiative in creating employment, fighting against poverty and being self-reliant,” said Mr Burenivalu.

The Warwick Resort and Spa Community liaison officer, Mereisi Togakai, acknowledged all stakeholders, turaga ni koro (village headman), parents and youths for making the day a success.

             Eroni Tuinuku is a second year Media and Journalism student of the Fiji National University

Edited by Caroline Ratucadra

Feedback: jyotip@fijisun.com.fj

 

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