Key Submissions from the National Human Resource Development Policy Validation Meeting
Following contributions from stakeholders, the Ministry of Labour and Social Security (MoLSS) and the Eswatini Economic Policy Analysis and Research Centre (ESEPARC) developed a draft review of the National Human Resource Development (HRD) Policy 2023 – 2030. As part of the policy development process, key stakeholders involved in the initial phase were invited to a validation meeting which was held on the 11th of November, 2022 at Sibane Sami Hotel. The main objective of this meeting was to solicit feedback and address any outstanding issues in order to ensure that the policy document reflects inputs from all stakeholders.
The key submissions from the meeting were captured as follows:
- Ensure that the country produces high-quality skills in the arts and creative sectors; strengthen the capacity of local training institutions to develop high quality skills and deepen expertise in the creative industries and develop local competencies.
- For skills that are occupied by expatriates, attempts should be made to train locals outside the country to fill those positions or to train to export high-level skills to other countries. Deliberate efforts should be made to develop experts in specific career fields.
- Promote TVET as a career path rather than an alternative stream of education, and also hold skill competitions to encourage skill development and the development of competencies in TVET skills.
- Include labour migration issues under strengthening institutional linkages between the Ministry of Labour and the Ministry of Home Affairs. Exporting excess skills should be taken into consideration.
- Policy implementation plan should be developed with timelines.
- Share information on skills needed from education system with the Ministry of Education
- Share changes that need to be implemented within the education sector with the Office of Chief Tertiary Education and Director of Education
- Ensure there is a synergy between what the Ministry of Labour is doing and what is expected from the education system – share reports on what skills should be produced (Ministry of Labour should workshop the Ministry of Education department on the Skills Audit report and NHRD policy with a view to develop a strategy on how they can collaboratively implement policy)
- Specify how the objectives of the policy will be addressed by the key institutions responsible for that activity.
- Re-emphasis the recognition of prior learning in the policy interventions.
- Policy should take into account people living with disabilities. There should be the necessary investment in infrastructure and personnel at schools and training institutions. Ensure policy addresses issues of special needs and provides for them.
- Practise inclusiveness – ensure new infrastructure developed in schools and in the country caters for people living with disability
- The policy should create linkages between youth unemployment and economic development policies, as well as opportunities available to the country’s youth.
- How does the policy protect local Swazi youth (informal jobs and small business growth and development) – youth empowerment in NHRD policy should create linkages with MSME policy and localisation policy.
- Ensure that policy allows for the creation of skill transfer opportunities between experienced (senior employees) and youth/younger employees in order to allow skill transfer to the youth.
- Review salaries of educators to encourage them to up-skill and apply new skills in training and educating learners; create incentives for educators (at all levels) to encourage forward-thinking and innovative teaching methods and content to ensure what they teach is aligned with skills needed in industry.
- National resources for funding education and training should be equally shared and distributed across all forms of learning (for both formal and informal education).
- Consider permanent employment vs. contractual employment and its effect on long-term productivity of employees.
- Consider creating a space to encourage start-ups to operate in niche areas.
- Create a synergy between investment and output in the M&E framework by assessing quality in implementation and collecting data on skills produced, employed, or demanded; collect data and develop a database of skills produced – labour market information systems – skills observatory.