KISUMU, Kenya, Aug 15 – The government has set aside Sh500 million to refurbish all National Industrial Training Authority (NITA) centers in the country.
Principal Secretary in the State Department for Labour Peter Tum on Thursday said the idea is to make the centres to conform to the latest technological advancements.
Tum said the exercise will also see staff retrained on emerging new technology.
“Refurnishing will mean that we ensure that we modernize the workshops, we again train those staff who are trainers and ensure that we have the right equipment,” he said.
Tum spoke in Kisumu when he toured Kisumu NITA branch and officially launched the 2019 government trade test certification series. He said the government is keen on producing skills for the growth of the nation.
The PS said NITA was central to generating a workforce that will mainly contribute to the goals of raising the contribution of manufacturing sector as envisioned in the Big Four Agenda of President Uhuru Kenyatta.
“Now we are producing the kind of skills that we will require for building industries that we will require for the mechanical industries and electrical industries” he said.
As part of NITA’s contribution to the Big Four Agenda, Tum announced that they target to upskill 10,000 workers in the textile and apparel sub-sector and train 11,000 workers in the construction sub-sector.
“A further 3,000 workers in the construction industry will be assessed and certified. These are annual targets for the next five years,” he said.
The specific assessment areas identified include masonry, electric wiring, carpentry, painting and decoration, food and beverage and textile and apparels.
The PS further announced that the ministry is currently mapping out available skilled labour in the country against what is existing in the job market.
He said the ministry has partnered with other agencies to set up Kenya Labour Management Information System to help in capturing the data on jobs available.
“What the government is basically doing on issues of employment, the trick we are doing as a ministry is to map the skills that are present in this country against the jobs available,” he said.
He further noted that the trade test certification that he launched on Thursday will assess skills possessed by an individual irrespective of the mode of acquisition of those skills either formally, informally or non-formally.
“The system determines the competence of an individual to perform specific functional roles as a worker,” he said.