Government ignores the challenges raised by young entrepreneurs, with nothing changing after government seminars or dialogue sessions, said iLembe entrepreneurs on June 25.
The entrepreneurs were attending an information-sharing session held by the transport department at the Ilembe Auditorium in KwaDukuza.
They expressed their frustration with MEC for transport, community safety and liaison, Peggy Nkonyeni who was there to tell the youth (35 and under) about opportunities available to them.
Nkonyeni said the session was created to discuss youth empowerment issues within the transport sector as well as the role of provincial government to ensure greater participation of youth in building the economy.
“This must be an intervention to unlock some of the barriers that prevent your participation as a young person in employment and other economic opportunities.
“Barriers to youth participation, particularly youth entrepreneurs, include a wide range of financial and non-financial barriers that prevent them from entering or fully participating in the formal economy and government supply chains,” said Nkonyeni.
Barriers usually included lack of financing, lack of skills and capacity building as well as lack of knowledge about the legislative environment.
She said the transport department had a legislative mandate to manage the transportation system in KwaZulu-Natal.
But in a technical environment like the transport department, it was crucial that they invest in scarce and critical technical skills in order to achieve their mandate.
“It is for this very reason that we have established programmes specifically targeting our youth.
“These programmes are also a benchmark against which we can judge the progress we make in the empowerment of our young people.”
She said it was also important to highlight that KwaZulu-Natal had the second largest population, with 11,4 million people.
The youth population in the province was highly affected by the migration of youth from other provinces, mostly residing in eThekwini.
Furthermore, youth-headed household in KZN make up 25,8% and most of those households are in urban areas accounting for 68,3% compared to 31, 6% in rural areas in 2019.
The pattern persists with youth living in urban areas constituting 70,1% compared to 29, 9% in 2014.
Originally Appeared Here