What's next Mr President?

HARARE - University and tertiary colleges’ graduates are increasingly taking up menial jobs amid a sharp rise in the number of students graduating without any hope of securing employment, a survey by the Daily News has revealed.

Highly qualified young people are routinely being expected to take on “low-skilled” roles to fill gaps in the workforce.

The number of ex-students in “non-graduate” jobs such as shelf stackers, kombi drivers and vendors is soaring.

At the same time, more university  leavers are also being left unemployed due to the dramatic economic downturn.

The majority of students are without work years after graduating.

Employment prospects are getting dim amid a weakening economy and further job losses from public spending cuts.

A snap survey by the Daily News revealed that some graduates have turned to the most basic menial jobs.
Ocean Ngwerume, a public administration graduate from the University of Zimbabwe, said he was now driving a kombi after he failed to get a job.

“I graduated last year and I could not find a job,” he said.

“I applied in many organisations but I failed to get a job. I could not sit at home and do nothing.

“Some of my friends whom I graduated with are now security guards and others are working in restaurants in South Africa.”

Melody Chademana, a marketing graduate from Harare Polytechnic, told the Daily News that she was working at a supermarket after she failed to get a job.

At least 30 000 graduates are churned out from universities and tertiary colleges every year, but most of them fail to secure employment due to the declining job opportunities in the formal job market, a situation that has constantly recurred over the past 10 years.

President Robert Mugabe caps thousands of university students every year but most of them join the unemployed ranks.

This year alone, Mugabe capped 2 860 graduates at the University of Zimbabwe, 566 at Bindura State University, 2001 at National University of Science and Technology, 1 343 at the Great Zimbabwe University and 1 245 at Chinhoyi University of Technology.

Nearly 4000 are expected to graduate from the Midlands State University.

But soon after the pomp and fanfare that accompanies the graduation ceremonies, most of the graduates face a bleak future, with even State firms retrenching.

The country’s unemployment rate tops 85 percent and additional people are becoming jobless every day as more firms shut down citing harsh economic conditions.

A recent survey by the National Social Security Authority (Nssa) said 711 companies in Harare went bust in the period July 2011 to July 2013, rendering 8 336 individuals jobless.

This is an addition to more than 90 companies that have closed shop in Bulawayo since 010, with more than 20 000 workers thrown into the streets.

Believe Tevera, vice president of Zimbabwe National Students Union (Zinasu) said the graduates are at the deep end.

“The situation is not looking good,” Tevera said.

“I know that some of the UZ graduates are into pool game business. Some of the graduates are now cross border traders.

“For some ladies, they have gone into prostitution and l know of a couple of ladies from UZ who do that.
“There is one MSU (Midlands State University) graduate who used his O Level certificate to get a job as a shunter at Zesa. This situation is terrible. Some graduates are vendors selling sweets and airtime. The government needs to create employment so that graduates can make a decent living.”

Martin Mpofu, a journalism graduate from National University of Science and Technology (Nust), said he was now into poultry farming after failing to get a proper job.

One call centre worker who spoke on condition of anonymity said: “Econet advertised that there were call centre vacancies for diploma holders, so l applied using my diploma certificate as l was afraid to be told that l was overqualified. I did my finance degree with Nust but l failed to get the job that l desired so l settled for the call centre,” she said.

Efforts to obtain comment from the ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education was futile as the minister Olivia Muchena and her deputy Godfrey Gandawa were not picking up their phones, while the permanent secretary Washington Mbizvo was said to be out of the country.

Comments (33)

Govt this, govt that! The Govt can not create jobs. We need a holistic approach, the govt can only create a conducive environment to do business and hence the creation of job opportunities. However people need career guidance before taking any courses and move away from enrolling for whats available. Institutions of Higher Learning need to look at what the industry needs- its a shame that these institutes are now after making a higher return and wont worry about their students once they give them the certificates of graduating which with time will not be worth the paper they are printed on!

chipo - 6 November 2013

There is nothing wrong in having a nation full of educated people. Look at countries like Nigeria, Singapore etc. you get served in restaurant by a graduate and that is good. Who said people should go to school to get a job?

Gidza - 6 November 2013

Gidza waakuto rwara iwe.Enda ku Inghutsheni hospital chop chop.

mambo - 6 November 2013

How good it is to be an Employer! MBA's asking for clerical jobs! Lovely, lovely, lovely!

Zhvanga - 6 November 2013

How good it is to be an Employer! MBA's asking for clerical jobs! Lovely, lovely, lovely!

Zhvanga - 6 November 2013

only fools can still think that an 89yr thing can creat jobs after failing for the past 33yrs on the other hand have themselves to blame as they are not fond of voting .

Dibulaanyika - 6 November 2013

Zimbabwe is on the right track, the idea is to get a degree then take what is available. In UK or developed countries everyone has a degree but still someone has to sweep streets, clean toilets etc. There is no co-relation between basa and GENERAL degree unless its medicine, law etc

daily budai pachena - 6 November 2013

We continue to pray that one day and only one day God will abundantly bless our nation and its people. We have suffered a lot and now we are taking whatever has come our way but one day and only one day God will give us what we deserve. What I find strange though is that very few of us are creating employment; rather we continue to seek employment. Take for instance, a person who qualified as a Chartered Accountant, Chartered Financial Analyst, Medical Doctor or lawyer in 1980 still begs to apply for a job. Who then will create employment for those born after 1980? As much as we might not all be shareholders but why are these old people still in their positions instead of them having resigned and opening companies of their own? The same applies to government officials. Imagine I was born when Mugabe was president and the people who make up his cabinet were cabinet ministers when I was born. Can this be a healthy situation for our country? NO. I respect the likes of Joe Mutizwa (Delta), Nyasha Zhou (who destroyed PGZI but formed his own company), Strive Masiiwa just but to mention a few who managed to create employment by using their salary savings to start their own operations. These are the kind of people this great country need but not exactly the type of Nyasha Zhou but still at least he managed to do something. One day God will bless Zimbabwe and its people.

Exiled - 6 November 2013

The situation obtaining in Zimbabwe is in huge part because of our misguided and inflated view of ourselves as Zimbabweans. There is a terrible culture in Zimbabwe which permeates from the president down to the very bottom. We tend to think of ourselves as highly educated, better than others and always "keeping up appearances". The other day I listened to the President say demeaning things about Mr Tsvangirai, that he was uneducated, etc. I don't know what's worse, leading a country full of graduates who don't have jobs as a result of of your own misguided policies or being led by someone with no college or university degree but is actually connected to the real day to day issues and problems of the people. I will take the latter any day of the week. Robert Mugabe is so out of touch, he does not remember what it feels like to go without. This is a man who has always been taken care of... since he was a teacher (privileged at the time), to the struggle (as secretary general, meaning good rations and accommodations), to the presidency. Now in his twighlight years, all he has for the suffering majority are insults which do not feed nor solve our problems. When was the last time anyone heard a policy initiative a new diea being promoted by the president? most of the past few decades have been spend either blaming the western world, or Tsvangirayi, Tekere, Muzorewa, Sithole, Nkomo and everyone else but himself... He thinks he is above all of us...

tino - 6 November 2013

a qualification is meant to complete a transaction with your prospective employer it is a slip that says im worth so much because so much has been invested in me in order to produce A,B,C results however that is not the case here....what is reality is an ideology that you must adapt or you will die your mind will stand on endless queues and ngo dustbin will have enough cv to make fires with,accept the situation now since you are literate you are not educated .educated people are products of an enviroment that facilitates the relevant educational needs..again i say you are literate you can read write good theories but your education cannot produce results when you have to survive,your paper with its meaningless symbols in the face of neccesity is just that paper kana anotengesa ma tomatoes arinani because they know kuti in order to survive you give the market what it wants yes we cannot all sell tomatoes but in our different ways we can appreciate what we have and have a spirit of empire like the rhodies we despise we go out conquer other nations and markets and make homes for our own children we must travel move and fight to define ourselves laziness is what kills you..learn thats how varungu got to come hear home wasnt their heaven they had ambition and pasison asi vakasiya zamu raqueen ko iwe Muka Zimbabwean take the world if you think you are educated then go out there and be the difference you want to see otherwise Zimbabwe is bobs hustle,his dues for his struggles..fight your own battle

Tex Gava - 6 November 2013

University degrees are no longer as valued as they used to be. Yes parents, friends, relatives may cheer, the truth is that with thousands receiving degrees there is no shine since at the end of it most graduates will may never employed in their intended or chosen careers. See the situation in Nigeria were you find PhDs as taxi drivers or drug dealers. At the end of one's education there schould be employment, without that, education becomes "academic". The government should thrive to create employment.

Rabison Nyundo (THE HAMMER) - 6 November 2013

lets all understand the simple fact that Governments are there to serve the interests of the people ie employment creation, health service delivery, enforcement of the rule of law, .............etc. all this is achieved through formulation and effective implementation of workable policies as a means of achieving the best and conducive political, social, economic as well cultural set-up to the total advantage of the nation's citizens. lets be rational and focussed in our thinking. there are future generations to come and if we relax and fool ourselves to the extend that we take for granted the issue of unemployment, then lets go hang. the status quo is going to affect future generations and this is totally disheartening. the graduates who are failing to get real jobs are future parents. their children are not going to receive the best out of their parents and this is bad. so my call to the officials in politics and government is that they re-engage whole heartedly and be passionate about developing and alleviating political, economic and social problems of importance. unemployment is an issue and it requires total attention. those who are sanctioning Zimbabwe should be humane also and know that its fellow beings that they are punishing

cde shambochena - 6 November 2013

People of Zimbabwe,forget going to university,its a now waste of time. Look at how many graduates are coming out of these institutions and where are they working,no where.To all parents and prospective university students,go to technical college,like the Polys and do technical courses,like Carpentry and Joinery,Electrical,Plumbing,Building,Painting and Decorating. With the current poor state of our economy,these are the course that can give you a life and stop waiting to be just employed,create your own employment. Wake up people.

Taffy - 6 November 2013

The issue of unemployment needs attention, government should do something to reduce unemployment rate. Just imagine spending more than three years studying to become a kombi driver, or security guard. Gidza you also need medical attention or else you are just a poor minded person living in a dark tunnel of confusion without vision

UZ Undergraduate - 7 November 2013

BOREHOLES and IRRIGATION engineers zim.engineers@gmail.com

iuazxcvbnm,';slkjh - 7 November 2013

90% of our local degrees are useless and irrelevant. Where on earth can you use a marketing degree for in Zimbabwe?

.... - 7 November 2013

This government has always been a government of patronage where Mugabe gives ministerial posts to his cronies regardless of whether they can do the job or not. Look at ignaius chombo a man hs acquired so much property through the abuse of his position of minister of Local government. Then there was Made who could not asses a crop out put by flying over a few farms in a light aircraft. Yes sir its the bandwgon for the fat cats and never mind the povo!

vortex - 7 November 2013

@ chipo yes the question is, is the gvt creatin g a conducive enviroment clearly the answer is no. thers nothing wrong with empowerment but simply 51% will chase them away. @ gidza clearly you are not a graduate because you do not know how it feels to have worked so hard for so long. Also it should be noted that when we say there are no jobs it means that even the restaraunt jobs are also hard to find. please grow up gidza

romeo - 7 November 2013

The one who call himself Gidza or whatever is dull, disgracefull, dirty just to mention a few characteristics of him, selfish if he have own, unAfrican and animal

Not an electronic rat - 7 November 2013

Gidza is 117% correct. Chitukai ini musiyane a Gidza

jaweti - 7 November 2013

The central fault in the Zimbabwean question are the Zimbabweans themselves. God cannot hand over the milk and honey this country is famed for because, as a people, we are still trapped in our fear. Imagine how many issues have been shoved down our throats without us even batting an eye. Now, they are even doing those botched experiments with the lives of our kids, under the guise of bilharzia vaccination. And, we keep quiet. The child you feed, clothe, send to school, protect with the sweat of your brow. Someone , oops 'govt'- just comes along and pushes those deadly and viceral chemicals down that kid. And, we keep quiet. We actually feel ourselves stewing inside with anger. Yet we cringe, as we have all these decades lost. Still, we want God to deliver us to the land of milk and honey. Well, have I got news for you? Until you consciously take charge of your destiny and country, until you know that you as a citizen -and only you - are in charge of your country's resources, those resources won't be silver-platter handed down to you, for wailing and complaining. Zimbabweans need to assert themselves. It is like a father refusing to hand the keys to the famiy car to the child until he becomes responsible enough not simply to love and want it, but as well to maintain and protect it. As it is, with our to-the-marrow fear, we are doing the biblical 40-years round and round Mount Horeb. (Deuteronomy 6: You have been around this mountain for too long, turn and move North). Stop this rigamarole about someone coming to rescue you. Cross the river, Zimbabwe.

choksen mataranyika - 7 November 2013

INDEGENIZE EMPOWER CREATE EMPLOYMENT! Wha a lot of bullshit crafted by Jonathan Moyo

Johno - 7 November 2013

Its a pity, shame, shame, on the government. The high office bearers "have taken too much for the owner not to see" Misplaced government priorities! People deserve better policies on education from grassroots to terciary. Alas its nowhere near here..not even in the 5 years of ZANU's tenure! If somebody knew that nobody 's given a second chance in life, they could be doing whats right for the hardworking zimbabweans!!

ziviso muza - 7 November 2013

We are a rich country we are reminded everyday and like I always say if you say your childr is inteligent but is not in school then he is as good as a dunderhead. You have riches which you cannot access so you are poor. Now we have to come to the real truth, Zimbabwe is a poor country from the President down to the banana vendor. he can dispute that because he moves in a convoy of 20 cars and has a big house a farm and whatever a pilot son-law but he leads a poor country so he is poor in the head. daily he sees poverty all over the country. Daily he sees deaths in hospitals which are not supposed to be. He is poor. Chipo we say the government why should we not when it fomulates laws which chases away investments using the ego Zimbabwe for Zimbabweans. Look east yet Chinamasa was in the west begging for budgetary support why not go to China the east. We have been lied to for too long and we have taken that lie to be true. Now hear the Herald shouting ts voice hoarse Econet affected by sanctions' that is all they can find out but is that true.

Maita Manyuka - 8 November 2013

basa rei. just get a woman and get married. zvakwana. basa unoridii.wat for.to have a woman is enough.

moyo - 8 November 2013

Mwari ngavatibatsire vana veZimbabwe kwatakananga hakuna chiyedza.

Ras - 9 November 2013

the colonial farmers have come to the end of there contracts farming the people for 0 wages while the made zillions of pounds i saw a video of farmers in Zimbabwe with a small shed containing 4 million pounds worth of tobacco this one shed would have been one of a few ? perhaps more if as i think is correct the price per kilo is $3.71 in England a 10 box of cigarettes has a max weight of 10 grams and retail's every where in shops across the uk the cheapest box will retail at £3.42 this is why there is a problem and will all way's be the number's are never in your favour as a rule. mostly all of the big nations who we have ever had economical trade with have this as a rule until this evil practice is abolished we may so no real growth for generations to come yours sincerely the .CONCERNED

deno - 9 November 2013

Tell me Mr Reporter, you really wanted the Minister to pick up your phone when they are clueless about resolving this problem? Wish you good luck on your next calls!

Jambanja paSalisbury - 10 November 2013

GIDZA the gvnt is elected by pple to serve and come up with policies that address the needs of the people,our gvnt have more enermies than friends hence all these,unempolyment,investments etc. VARUME LISTERN AND LISTERN CAREFULLY.MAfirst world countries anochinja ma gnvts haapengi.MAIITIRO AKO AWO CHINJA.

TERRA COTTA - 11 November 2013

inga zvinonzwisa tsitsi mambo...mukanya vakazvitaura kare

chief - 13 November 2013

the entire team ine chembere nembavha shld go . we need a new team with new ideas

CHIEF - 13 November 2013

i really don't know what is wrong with our economy some of us we learn having a hope to be better people some day but the hope we have is deteriorating each moment. as of now the lecturers are on strike were should we put our hope at. they say education is everything but i guess not in Zimbabwe. we are destroying our own country due to brain wash, truth be told no one will wait for the economy to be well again kade bakhuluma that it will be fine but its a lie that we don't want to face. some lucky educated people are going out of the country to improve other countries but where is it leaving Zimbabwe? what wrong with this Zimbabwe? we have land, minerals and we were once considered having the best education but now its all in vain.

shantel nyathi - 18 March 2015

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