EDITOR: The economic situation in our country which inevitably affects the job market is undoubtedly dire.
Nevertheless I do feel that the “jobs mantra” contributes to the sense of dependency which disempowers our people and inadvertently prevents the very generation of “jobs” which we gravely need. A more empowering narrative would emphasise and use the expression “income generating streams”. This expression embodies the often touted need for entrepreneurship and it allows for the recognition that there are means of self-employment and self-generated sources of income.
We must admit that the term “job” carries with it the notion that something has to be handed to “you”. It may even take the responsibility of earning for oneself away from individuals. No, I am not indulging in a mere game with semantics. My focus is on the power of words to frame actions and concepts of actions. Yes, our government does have a responsibility to ensure the generation of sustainable streams of income in our society. Our government also has the responsibility to ensure that schooling and education are presented as our pathways out of poverty. These pathways equip us with the means of learning how to take responsibility for our livelihoods.
Let’s use these pathways to adjust our perspectives on how we approach the dire economic challenges confronting us.