By Luzily Chiponde
Minister of Environment, Tourism and Wildlife, Simon Vuwa Kaunda has asked Nkhata Bay youth to vote for Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and United Democratic Front (UDF) Alliance in fresh presidential elections to be conducted on June 23, this year.
Minister Kaunda made the call during a youth gathering he organised at Tukombo in the district Friday.
He said voting for DPP-UDF torch bearer, President Peter Mutharika comes with numerous development opportunities for young people in the country.
He said community technical colleges Mutharika constructed across the country have turned many youth into entrepreneurs while creating jobs for many others.
Kaunda added that more youth stand to gain vocational skills through constituency technical collages government will construct in all 193 constituencies in the country.
He further talked about the K13 billion Malawi Enterprise Development Fund (Madef) loan women and youth are accessing to empower themselves through businesses.
“Such developments would only prevail when you have a President who puts the welfare of young people at heart and that is Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika. That’s why I am urging you not to lose focus with the noise out there,” said Kaunda.
Speaking on behalf of the youth, Kettie Phiri said access to loans remained a challenge to the youth due to lending institutions’ demand for collateral.
“We faced challenges to access loans because money lending institutions demanded assets such as land which many of us don’t have,” she said.
She described President Mutharika as a development conscious leader as community technical colleges and access to loans respond well to needs of youth who constitute over 60 percent of the country’s population.
“Some youth have completed secondary education but can’t go to university due to some reason or the other. Some have failed to even complete secondary education.
“All these youth stand a chance of enrolling with community technical colleges, gain skills, get a loan and make a difference in their lives,” she said.
She however, called on relevant authorities in disbursement of Medef loan not to politicise the loan saying there are many deserving young people in need of it.
She also condemned political leaders who use young people as weapons of violence against their opponents.
“We need to be empowered with ideas and resources that will help us sharpen our future, not attacking other people and risking our lives,” she said.