According to the Regional Commissioner of Manyara, Mr Eraston Mbwilo there are 579 primary and 144 secondary schools in the region and each year, the schools produce an average of 42,000 school leavers between them.
“The schools turn out approximately 32,000 primary school leavers and roughly 10,000 form four leavers many of whom end as the job seekers each year,” said the Regional Commissioner adding that the six training colleges found in Manyara can only absorb a maximum of 6,000 new students per year. With no practical skills these youth do not particularly have a bright future in the job market talk less of being self employed.
The Region has been finally blessed with its own Vocational Education Training Authority (VETA) institution after the official inauguration of the training centre by the Vice President, Dr Mohammed Gharib Bilal. Based in Babati the centre will absorb youth from around the area as well as others from Simanjiro, Kiteto, Mbulu and Hanang.
Training courses offered include masonry and brick-laying, carpentry, technical studies in agriculture and more. The Regional Commissioner pointed out that, “We are delighted to have the training center here, where farmers can learn processing skills that will enable them start small plants to fully or semi-process their harvest instead of taking them to markets in their raw form.”
The Regional Commissioner, Mr Mbwilo the Region should take advantage of the food processing courses since Manyara Region boasts of 1,440,000 cattle, and the farmers would benefit from learning how to make dairy products and package meat.
The Vice President, Dr Bilal at the launch called for the establishment of more specialised vocational training centres that are sensitive to the resources found in the respective localities.
The VETA centre in Manyara has an annual intake of 600 students annually and was constructed and equipped with funding from, the Republic of South Korea whose, Ambassador to Tanzania, Mr Young Hoon Kim was also present at the launch. The Vice President said it was high time for the country to invest more in specialised training institutes not only to equip youth with skills for employment but to add value to the natural resources found within localities.
“For example places where minerals are found should have gemstone cutting and processing training centres. Carpentry should be the main focus in areas where there are forests. The VETA centre in Arusha right in the hub of tourism in the country has a teaches tourism.” The Vice president said.
The South Korean envoy, Mr Kim said his country had injected US $ 18 million through the Skills Development Levy for the establishment of four vocational centres in Tanzania in the four regions of Coast, Lindi, Manyara and Dar es Salaam.