During the 2019 Youth Accountability Forum on Education and Gender Equality, Executive Director of the National Youth Service- Onanah Jalloh, inspired Sierra Leonean youths by enjoining them not to hesitate to make their dreams a visible reality.
Speaking on the topic, “TVET and Gender Equality, what could be done to increase the percentage of young women to enroll in training centers for more employment and the importance of gender equality to sustain human rights,” the NYS Executive Director intimated how his institution after the review process will be the perfect solution to achieving the country’s middle level manpower. He said not everyone will become a university graduate stressing how technical vocational education is needed to train young people in architectural design, auto mechanic, plumbing, upholstery, mason, driving and other technical trainings that will help them to be self-reliant.
According to Onanah Jalloh, NYS is currently focusing on university graduates as provided for in the 2016 Act saying plans are currently under way to review the Act in order to absorb those who are not university graduates. He mentioned the Kenyan model which according to him is best suited for Sierra Leone.
He admitted that there are challenges but the available opportunities should be jealously utilized by young people.
“The world is moving and young people are impatient to be part of the development process,” he said, adding that, “President Julius Maada Bio believes in young people and he is convinced that he cannot achieve his development trajectory plan without our involvement. I am now calling on you all to stand up and stop thinking that white collar job is the solution for us as young people.”
The Chairman, Committee on Youth Affairs in Parliament, Hon. Adbul Kargbo said his committee is working in collaboration with the Ministry of Youth Affairs and its line agencies especially the National Youth Service to help address the growing challenges young people are confronted with.
He called on university authorities to review their curriculum to match up with the available job market.
“Let us restructure our educational curriculum to fit modernization and avoid offering courses on national integration and mathematical calculation that are not creating the required impact on building the middle level manpower,” Hon. Kargbo averred, noting that education is about solving problems and not just speaking big and impressive grammars.
The Youth Accountability Forum was held on Wednesday, 3rd July, 2019 at the American Corner on Bathurst Street in Freetown.