He made the statement yesterday while opening the International Conference of the Commonwealth Association of Technical Universities and Polytechnics in Africa (CAPA).
Ngirente pointed out that Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) role in the country’s economic transformation would be possible if graduates from TVET are highly skilled and competitive in the labor market.
He stressed that the country’s target in the National Strategy for Transformation (2017-2024) is to increase the number of students attending TVET schools to 60% by 2024 from 31.1% in 2017.
“TVET is one of the most powerful tools to fight poverty. It does not only provide skills to gain paid employment but also to promote and support creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship to develop the ability to create jobs and employment opportunities,” said Ngirente.
The Premier encouraged African Governments to support young people to acquire job-related skills since it is a key developmental challenge that most African Governments have.
He noted that Africa needs skilled workers, in particular, competent technicians who are needed to fill skills gaps in various sectors of the economy that include the construction industry, energy sector, water distribution, and sanitation systems, and large public works.
Ngirente advised that African countries need to educate the youth and encourage them to embrace labor mobility opportunities if they are to become talent-driven.
“African youth should take advantage of AfCFTA in terms of free movement of labor as an added opportunity for them,” he noted.
Themed “Building Partnerships for the Promotion of TVET for Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Youth Employment in Africa”, CAPA conference brought together 20 African member countries, represented by Education Ministers, Technical Universities, Polytechnics, and Technical Colleges and Vocational Training Institutes in Africa as well as other stakeholders in TVET.
The Secretary-General of Commonwealth Association of Polytechnics in Africa, Jahou Faal urged African countries to promote TVET and link students to employers.
“African countries need to put much effort promoting vocational education and network with institutions tipping them of required employees at the labor market,” he said.
Research findings released in 2017, revealed that the unemployment rate in Rwanda stood at 16.7 %.
51 % of employed didn’t attend school, 29 % completed primary school, 5% completed the ordinary level, 9% completed secondary education while 6% are university graduates.