Whilst the national youth empowerment and indigenisation programme is meant to benefit all youths regardless of gender, religion or ethnicity, Bulawayo youths in the Christian community have been sidelined from the beneficiation.
After making consultations with CABS, the bank whose prerogative is to disburse money to unemployed youths, and having crafted business proposals, their efforts are fruitless.
With unemployment rising at a phenomenal rate in Zimbabwe, self-driven projects like poultry and boutiques are creating employment in the nation.
But since the Zimbabwe Youth Fund was launched in 2010, the Zimbabwe Christian Youth Forum and its members have not benefited from the scheme which is worth USD10 million.
Speaking during a Youth Dialogue meeting held at Family of God church recently, Innocent Dube expressed concern over the growing numbers of business proposals that are being turned down by banks.
Addressing unemployed youths, he said that he made frantic efforts to make sure he and his colleagues get the funds to no avail. “We have mobilised youths to write business proposals, but they did not have the technical expertise. Hence we engaged those who had the know-how. Alas, the banks say that the Minister is politicking in that he presents loans which never materialise.”
Responding to the concern, Minister of Youth Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Saviour Kasukuwere promised the disgruntled youths that the money would be available. “I know that it has not been easy. The young people are disappointed. But we will be working with CABS to make sure the money is available,” Kasukuwere redeemed himself.
In 2010, Kasukuwere promised scores of youths in Matabeleland that USD3 million for projects, which never saw the light of day.
With industry closing, many school-leavers and college graduates are unemployed, painting a bleak future for the desperate youths who could not help it but complain to Kasukuwere.