The Deputy Minister in the Presidency Mr Obed Bapela has urged the community of Alexandra to grab the job opportunities that currently exist in the country and refrain from seeing some of these jobs as low-level jobs. Bapela said many jobs exist in the country. However, many people fail to realise that these opportunities exist because they look down on them.
He was speaking at a co-operatives workshop hosted by the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) in Alexandra on Monday, 10 February 2014. Aspiring entrepreneurs and the youth were workshopped about forming co-operatives in order to access funding from government and its agencies.
“There are a lot of dumping sites in Alexandra, and if the youth could see such opportunities, organise themselves into co-operatives and clean up these sites or even recycle the material found there, such projects would assist them to create jobs for themselves and also participate in the local economy,” said Bapela.
He advised the community to copy the strategies utilised by foreign nationals to establish and run businesses and compete with them instead of fighting them.
The chairperson of the Trade and Industry Portfolio Committee Mrs Joanmariae Fubbs said co-operatives provide a tool to creating jobs for oneself, others and vehicle for growing the economy. She encouraged the community to think out of the box, stop asking for government to provide jobs and start creating their own jobs.
“If you are united in number you have the power. Co-operatives are successful because they bring together different skills and contributions and promote corporate ownership,” she added.
According to Fubbs, the Co-operatives Act which was recently signed into law provides for a lot of opportunities for support and funding for co-operatives.
The community was given an opportunity to interact with officials from the dti’s incentive administration division, the Youth and Co-operatives Directorates, Small Enterprise Development Agency (seda), Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC) and the National Empowerment Fund (NEF).
Ms Linda Chauke, an entrepreneur who owns a Mayonnaise manufacturing company said she was excited about the information she received at the workshop. She said she had been struggling to get funding to improve her business and buy new equipment.