The government has embarked on a comprehensive plan to build vocational training colleges in all districts in the country using mostly internally sourced funds and local contractors.
In an interview with The Guardian, VETA Director General, Engineer Zebadiah Moshi said the first phase which is underway, involves construction of 28 colleges while negotiations are going on with the African Development Bank (ADB) to secure a loan of more than 112bn/- for the project.
He said that Makete Vocational Education and Training College which is being constructed at a cost of more than 1.5bn/- is one of the colleges to be constructed in the first phase.
“The Makete College is being constructed using VETA’s own funds and contractors. Our decision to use our own funds and local contractors is to minimise costs in the construction of the colleges,” he said.
He said the loan from ADB will be used for the construction and equipping of the colleges with modern technology to get highly qualified personnel to serve in different technical fields.
“VETA graduates are agents of change. We expect to generate as many agents of change as possible in order to go with the changing world of science and technology,” he noted.
Commenting on the role played by republic of South Korea in supporting VETA infrastructures at regional level, Eng Moshi said he was optimistic that collaboration between the two would continue at the district level.
For his part, the Deputy Minister for Education and Vocational training Philipo Mulugo said the Ministry has directed VETA and NACTE to expand training to level three in order to bridge the shortage of technicians in the country.
“The government will continue to set aside funds and improve the vocational training colleges including equipping then with adequate learning and teaching facilities.
Recently when laying the foundation stone at Makete Vocational Education and Training College in Makete district, Vice President, Dr Mohamed Gharib Bilal said the expansion and improvement of VETA colleges would help to minimise the number of unemployed youths estimated at 11.7 percent in 2006/7.
He said VETA should know that it has the responsibility to ensure that the training offered meet the required national and international standards.
Quality training will assure the graduates from VETA colleges of securing jobs and promoting economic growth.
He said vocational education is a weapon in the fight against poverty. It enhances development of the nation.
He said Tanzanians must change and avoid negative perception among them that students joining the colleges were those who have failed.