Namibia: Unemployed Youth Scramble for 40 Rail Jobs At Ondangwa

16 January 2019

Ondangwa — Hordes of unemployed youth yesterday flocked to TransNamib's Nehale lyaMpingana Railway Station to scramble for about 40 labourer jobs available to repair the railway line from Ondangwa to Oshikango on a six month contract. The applicants, who had gathered to submit their application forms through the fence, had to endure rain showers but soldiered on.

Hundreds of unemployed youths descended on the station after Ondangwa Urban Councillor Elia Irimari made the announcement about railway jobs through social media and the radio.

The announcement called for people to come to be recruited, however that did not happen and the potential applicants were only asked to submit their CVs, accompanied by other required documents.

He said what transpired yesterday morning signifies high unemployment in the country, especially amongst the youth.

Despite the number of applicants, Irimari said he understood that some people were already called for the physical fitness test.

In 2017, the country's unemployment rate stood at 45.5 percent.

Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) representative at Ondangwa Town Council, Councillor Johnny Whiteman Martin, in a statement issued yesterday expressed discontent over the recruitment process.

Martin said what transpired was unacceptable and an insult to the unemployed masses.

"This did not only show how unprofessional the TransNamib management is, but they seriously wasted peoples resources that made copies, traveled and walked to TransNamib with the aim to get employment," said Martin.

"No Namibian should be subjected to such unprofessional behaviours just because the company is offering employment. Employers should handle recruitment processes in a standard manner that will help ease the situation and make applicants happy," Martin said further.

Martin thus called for an apology and for a postponement of the recruitment so that it can be done in what he terms a professional matter that will satisfy all the stakeholders.

Meanwhile, some of the applicants who gathered at TransNamib also expressed dissatisfaction over the recruitment process.

They charged that the parastatal would have given a timeframe for the submission of the application in place of throwing their documents over a fence.

The applicants had travelled from all four northern regions.

Although the process started at eight in the morning, some youths were still observed to be flocking to the area shortly before 10.

New Era could not obtain comment from TransNamib at the time of going to print.

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