The Situation of Youth in the Southern African Development Community, An Overview of SADC countries.
Youth Employment Summit (YES2002), an initiative of civil society, multi-lateral
agencies, the private sector and other youth related stakeholders launched the
Youth Employment Summit Decade Campaign of Action as a response to high rates of
youth unemployment worldwide.
The YES Decade Campaign of Action aims to build young people’s capacity to
create sustainable livelihoods and to establish an entrepreneurial culture in
which young people can work towards self-employment.
part of the YES Decade Campaign of Action the Youth Development Network (YDN), a
South African network of youth organisations, is involved in a Southern African
regional project aimed at promoting youth employment in the Southern African
Development Community (SADC). Among other activities, this project aims to
develop a database on the situation of youth in the SADC region.
Community Agency for Social Enquiry (C A S E) was commissioned by
the YDN to produce a database on the situation of youth in the 14 SADC
countries. The database will form part of the implementation of the Youth
Employment Summit Regional Support Plan for Southern Africa.
The database was expected to source a wide range of youth-specific
information on education, skills, employment policies and programmes as well as
social and political integration of youth. This information was complemented by
contextually specific information on the general economic, political and social
climate of each SADC country. The requested information can be grouped into 6
Youth-specific economic indicators;
Education and Skills;
Youth-specific employment policies;
Key challenges facing young people; and
Social and Political integration.
report contains the executive summaries of the final report submitted to the
key method of data collection was a web-based search of the above-described
categories, in which the collection and analysis of data was undertaken in a
two-stage process. The first stage involved an internet search of information
that was the most readily and easily accessible, as well as the use of C A S E
publications and other printed materials. The second stage of the project
involved a continuation of the methods deployed during stage 1, as well as
telephonic and e-mail requests for missing information from relevant sources in
the different SADC countries.
initial stage assisted in identifying existing youth stakeholders who would be
contacted in the second phase of the project. In the second stage of the project
identified youth-serving or related ministries, youth-related organisations and
national statistical agencies were contacted via email and telephone for missing
or more reliable information.
were nine key sources of information that provided information on the general
status of the each country, and the situation of youth in each country. Sectoral
information on education, health, labour and infrastructural development was
accessible from sources such as UNICEF, WHO, ILO and UN Habitat. Other sources
of information were government websites, the World Bank, the IMF, newspaper
articles and NGOs and CBOs that posted information on their websites.
such as the Reserve and Central banks and the CIA World Fact Book provided
contextual information for each country. For example, the CIA World Fact Book
and the World Bank provided information on a country’s GDP and major economic
sectors. The CIA World Fact Book also provided information on each country’s
geographical location and size, political history and social information such as
languages spoken in that country. These sources also provided a basic overview
of the educational systems and health situation for some of the SADC countries.
kinds of information on each SADC country were readily accessible, while other
types of information required longer searches. For example, information on the
social, economic and political climate was easily accessible from a range of
on each SADC country’s population size, sex, race and age breakdowns of the
population was readily available from a number of sources. Additionally, country
indicator-information such as access to water, electricity and sanitation was
easily accessible from sources such as UN Habitat, CIA World Fact Book and the
World Bank among other sources. However, in some countries this information had
to be supplemented extensively by in-country sources of information, especially
with regard to electricity access. Internal and external sources often specified
different levels of access to basic resources.
types of data that were easy to obtain were country information on the systems
and levels of education and enrolment rates at each level was generally
obtainable from UNICEF. Life expectancy and infant mortality data was available
from various sources.
prevalence estimates for all the 14 SADC countries were the most accessible,
although different sources generally stated different prevalence rates. For each
country, there was at least one source that had data on the unemployment rate of
the whole population and the major economic sectors of employment.
on the age definition of youth for each country was sometimes unavailable and in
other cases multiple definitions were used by various sources. A particular
obstacle was that the various UN organisations where often the only source of
youth-specific information, but that their definition of youth (15-24 years) did
not necessarily coincide with country-specific definitions. For example,
Mozambique’s definition of youth is 14-35 years and Namibia’s definition is
about the cost and availability of primary, secondary and tertiary education was
not obtainable for all SADC countries. Furthermore, not all of the SADC
countries had information on the availability of youth skills and vocational
data on the general unemployment rate was generally obtainable for most
countries, this was not always the case for levels of youth unemployment.
However, youth unemployment is generally estimated to be substantially higher
than overall unemployment. Detailed labour force information about sectors of
youth employment, type of youth employment (e.g. part/full time), remuneration
by sector and historical trends in youth employment often did not exist.
Furthermore, information on employment policies and programmes targeted at youth
was often difficult or impossible to obtain, which presents an obstacle for
legitimately assessing the types of opportunities youth had in each country.
were significant differences in the quality and reliability of the collected
data between the different SADC countries. The major factor in this was often
whether or not a country had its own statistical agency or if it relied solely
on data from international agencies. Another important factor was the political
and social stability within a given country.
collected from different sources was also rarely consistent, with different
statistics being reported for the same questions. This was particularly the case
with HIV/AIDS prevalence rates and levels of unemployment in each country. A
major factor was again that this type of data generally had to be sourced from
international agencies like the UN or the ILO because it had not been collected
within the country concerned, and that these figures are generally based on
estimates and projections. Another general challenge was sourcing relevant and
recent data, as some of the statistics available were often very outdated.
to varying degrees, it was easier to source general population data rather than
youth specific data in each of the SADC countries. Some of these countries may
keep records of age-segregated information, however these are not easily
accessible from outside of these countries. This suggests that there is a need
for advocacy on knowledge development on issues affecting youth. Information
keeping and knowledge development on youth issues are major factors that
determine successful advocacy and lobbying. In the absence of this information
youth practitioners’ advocacy and youth development initiatives may be
limited. Information keeping and knowledge development on youth issues is a
responsibility of all stakeholders, be they government, the civil sector and
multilateral agencies. Therefore, various stakeholders should explore various
methods of information keeping.
gained independence from Portugal in 1975 but has been embroiled in civil war
since then. The civil war has contributed to the devastation of Angola’s
economic and social infrastructure. The civil war has also undermined data-bases
in Angola, making it difficult to find information about the state of youth in
no Angola-specific definition of youth was found, this report makes use of the
UN definition of 15 - 24 years.
1998, the literacy rate of the adult population (15 years and over) was
estimated to be between 30% and 42%, with male literacy being higher (56%) than
the female literacy rate (28%) (INE; CIA 1998).
has an eight-year compulsory system of free, basic education for children
between the ages 7 and 15 years with 4 years each for primary and secondary
school and an optional 2 extra years for secondary school. The economic crisis
in Angola has adversely affected enrolment rates; the length and quality of
education. Less than 50% of eligible children, especially girls, are enrolled in
school and very few children complete more than four years of education. The
quality of education has also been compromised by poor and damaged
infrastructure, understaffing and the tendency to send children to informal and
has at least 3 skills training centres offering practical skills and small
enterprise development to landmine victims, and a regional programme for
employment and vocational training promotion.
state of the country’s education system seems to have created a situation
where it is no longer able to teach the skills which are needed, particularly in
the oil, textiles and clothing, tyre and cement sectors which are the main focus
of the manufacturing industry.
data was available on employability.
1985 Angolan youth formed 30% of the 5 million employed (ILO). A recent SADC
statistic (2000) indicates that the unemployment rate in Angola stood at 31.1%.
Youth are likely to be based in the informal and agricultural sectors, as 85% of
the labour force is in this sector (ILO Genderstats). Additionally, during the
civil war youth were an important source of labour in the lucrative illegal
was no data available referring to the factors that influence levels of
on the historical trends in youth (un)employment was unavailable.
oil and services sectors contribute the most to the GDP, while the agricultural
and industrial sectors employ the most number of people. Given that the fishing
and oil sectors have been the least affected by the civil war, they have the
potential to form the most lucrative sources of employment for youth in which a
comprehensive education and skills transfer drive would be necessary.
information was available on the major economic sectors in terms of output and
employment, information on the types of youth employment was unavailable.
1999, UNAIDS and WHO estimated an HIV/AIDS prevalence of 2.78%, while UNAIDS
estimated an increase to 5.5% in 2002. Fifteen thousand people were estimated to
have died from HIV-related illnesses in 1999 (UNAIDS).
prevalence rate was estimated at 1% for male youth and 3% for female youth in
1999, increasing to between 4% and 7% for male youth and 1.6% and 3% for female
youth by 2002.
to UNICEF, there is very low awareness of HIV/AIDS prevention amongst the
Angolan population. This is perhaps evidenced by Angola’s high prevalence of
teenage pregnancies. Youth AIDS is actively promoting HIV/AIDS awareness in
data was available regarding the impact of HIV/AIDS on employment. It is known,
however, that HIV strikes the economically active population the hardest –
even though Angola’s HIV/AIDS prevalence rates are still relatively low.
legacy of the civil war has disrupted all spheres of social life and economic
life. Impoverishment, displacement, disability and the lack of infrastructure
(health, education etc) are some of the challenges facing youth. The government
is currently implementing a Global Social Reintegration Programme (PGDR) worth
an estimated US$ 231 for ex-UNITA rebel soldiers and their families.
in 1999 the Angolan government announced its intention of drafting a state youth
policy, there is nothing to indicate that it has been drafted or implemented.
Sectoral policies on education, culture and education, in which youth could be
incorporated, do however exist.
is faced with re-integrating child soldiers back into the community. As one of
Africa’s poorest countries Angola has to transform its fisheries,
manufacturing and agricultural sectors. Since the country is wealthy in diamonds
it has the opportunity to transform its mineral wealth into real economic growth
is currently ruled by system of multi-party democracy and has remained peaceful
since its independence in 1966. The Botswana Democratic Party (BDP) is the
ruling party after winning 54.3% of the vote in 1999. The next democratic
elections will be held in 2004. Despite having maintained of the world’s
highest economic growth rates, 44% of the Botswana’s population still live
below the poverty line, and has a very high HIV/AIDS prevalence rate.
1995, the youth definition in Botswana was defined as 12-29 years.
literacy rate was 68.9% in 1993, in which male literacy was significantly higher
(70.3%) than female literacy (66.9%) (CSO Literacy Survey). In 2000, youth
literacy rate was estimated at 88.3% (UN).
has free and compulsory primary education for children aged 7-14 years and aims
for universal basic education of 10 years. Primary school enrolment rates were
much higher (115%) than tertiary level enrolment rates - 4.9% (CSO).
has a number of skills training available to youth. There are 46 Vocational
Training Centres offering training in business skills, social care, construction
and decoration, information and communication technology, among other areas
(Ministry of Finance and Development Planning: Budget speech, 1999). Botswana is
planning to align training with country’s critical sectors such as
manufacturing and industry.
Population Project estimates that the size of the more-educated labour force is
growing and the less educated labour force is decreasing. The Population Project
also suggests that there is a mismatch between the skills needed in the economy
and the skills produced by the education system. They suggest that in the 1990s
there were a significant number of people in the labour force with secondary
education who held unskilled jobs. Youth also identified language skills as
important for functioning in the workplace (CSO: Literacy Survey: 1993).
1985 youth labour force participation of those aged 15-19 years was 46.1% and
78.2% for the 20-24 year olds, these statistics decreased to 29.4% for 15-19
year group and 66.8% for 20-24 year group in 1991 (CSO: Population and Housing
Census). Another source stated that youth employment was 16% (YES2002). BIDPA
states that youth unemployment was as high as 52% in 1994 (Junior Achievement
data on youth part/full time employment was unavailable, there are indications
that youth unemployment has worsened in Botswana.
factors may contribute to youth unemployment, in that Botswana’s education
policy may not match the employment needs of the country and there are low
levels of enrolment at university level.
the mining and the tourism sectors contribute the most to the GDP at 34.2% and
15.9% respectively, the agriculture and livestock and the services sectors
employ the largest number of people, at 43%and 52% respectively (LFS 1993/94).
prevalence rate among the general population was 19% (UNDP Botswana).
youth-specific HIV/AIDS prevalence statistics were unavailable, 20% of youth are
not using contraceptives putting them at risk of contracting HIV/AIDS and STIs
(BOPA). About 3 out of 10 adolescents live with HIV and half of all new
infections are among teenagers (AllAfrica). Adolescent girls’ infection rates
are also higher than young male infection rates.
Additional data on the impact of HIV/AIDS on employment was unavailable.
data available, but HIV/AIDS is considered a threat to Botswana’s economic
there are clinics run by UNIDEF and UNFPA offering information on HIV/AIDS and
treatment of STIs, the UNDP reports that 60% of youth do not have access to
reproductive health and family planning. Furthermore other research suggests
that there is “little hard evidence” to show that school-based HIV/AIDS
education has had a major impact on sexual behaviour (University of Sussex).
of the key challenges facing Botswana youth are the effect of HIV/AIDS,
unemployment and teenage pregnancy, which was 19% (UNDP). Other challenges
include alcohol and drug abuse and practices of unsafe sex (IRIN news 4 July
that affect youth are the Vision 2016, the National Development Plan for Youth
(ND7), Culture Policy and Sport Policy, National Youth Policy (UNDP Botswana),
Youth Charter: 2002 (Friedrich Ebert Stiftung: FES international).
to the Minister of Labour and Home Affairs (1994), the National Development Plan
(NDP 7) recognizes the need to slow down the rate of population growth in order
to cater for the youth in terms of education, health and other amenities, as
well as to provide meaningful employment.
Botswana’s economy has been steadily increasing over the last 2 decades, not
all of its policies have promoted human growth and development. The shortcomings
of current labour market policies, the slow pace of reform of state-owned
enterprises, and the large-size and unstable growth of Government have
contributed to 44% of the population living below the poverty line. Furthermore,
Botswana has to deal with youth unemployment and the rapid increase in the
prevalence of HIV/AIDS which may have a substantial implication for progress in
developing its human capital and improving productivity (World Bank Group 2000).
In terms of skills training available to youth, it seems that the vocational and
training centres are popular, since 9 609 students enrolled in 1999 (CSO).
has an opportunity to extend its successful economic growth to the development
and sustainability of youth.
of civil war and corruption have badly damaged the DRC’s economy and
infrastructure (US Dept 2003). In 2002 a peace agreement was reached between the
government, rebel groups and neighbouring governments. Despite this agreement
the conflict continues in parts of the DRC. As a result, very little information
is available about youth in this country, and those figures that are available
should be treated with caution.
does not appear to be an official definition of youth in the DRC. However, it is
known that in the DRC children aged 16 or above can be sentenced to death, and
child civilians and child soldiers are brought before military courts (UNHCHR,
UNDP estimates that the literacy rate has increased from 41% in 1985 to 61% in
2000. The female illiteracy rate is high, especially in rural areas. Youth
literacy (15-24 years) was approximately 82% (UNDP).
is compulsory for children between 6 and 11, but attendance is estimated to be
below 75%. Only about 40% of children complete this compulsory period (ISS,
2003). Secondary education is not compulsory and begins at age 12 for six years.
Enrolment in secondary school is even lower at 25%, and this is mainly due to
the conflict in the DRC. The school enrolment rate for girls is
particularly low and the Red Cross/Red Crescent estimates that the drop out rate
for girls is as high as 46% (2002).
data was unavailable.
data was not available
on the levels of youth employability was unavailable.
is difficult to obtain up to date, reliable statistics regarding youth
unemployment or economic activity in the DRC. According to the UN, almost half
of youth aged 15-19 years (male: 53%, female: 45%), and 73% of youth aged 20-24
years (male: 88%, female: 57%) were economically active in 1985. Overall it is
estimated that youth aged 15-24 years made up 29% of the labour force in 1985,
with far more males (20%) than females (9%).
conflict in the DRC has in a strange way provided ‘employment’ for millions
of young people. As soldiers in various armies, they received food or pay in
exchange for their labour. However, the recent cessation of conflict has
released numerous young jobseekers into the labour market, many of whom lack the
skills or attitude required for employment. The reintegration of child soldiers
into society is another challenge in the DRC.
no data was available, it is likely that the civil war and corruption adversely
affect youth employment.
data was not available, although the Democratic Republic of the Congo has
one of the richest reserves of natural resources in the world, but the economy
has declined drastically since the mid-1980s due to economic mismanagement and
the on-going conflict in the country. The DRC is now one of the poorest
countries in the world, ranking 150th out of 174 with respect to income per
capita (Red Cross/Red Crescent, 2002).
dominates the Congolese economy, contributing roughly half of GDP (ISS, 2003).
According to IMF estimates, mining contributes 8%, manufacturing just 4%, and
trade and commerce 17%. Decades of
state-sponsored plunder, declining infrastructure, minimal investment and almost
continuous conflict since 1996 have led to a steep decline in production. The
country cannot feed itself and is dependent on imports from neighbouring
adult prevalence of HIV/AIDS in the DRC is currently estimated at 5% (UNAIDS,
2002). No youth-specific information is available. Although the DRC was the
first African country to design and implement an HIV/AIDS programme, at present
the prevention programmes are virtually non-existent. The epidemic has worsened
dramatically in recent years as a result of economic crisis, conflict and
related population displacements (USAID, 2002). Other factors fuelling the
spread of HIV in the DRC include the movement of large numbers of refugees and
soldiers, the scarcity and cost of safe blood transfusions in rural areas, a
lack of counselling and testing sites, high levels of untreated sexually
transmitted infections (STIs) and low availability of condoms outside Kinshasa.
data was unavailable.
the continuing conflict and the lack of resources are amongst the key challenges
facing youth in the DRC.
and programmes that aim to develop and uplift youth in the DRC have been almost
non-existent in recent years, and no information is available regarding such
are currently no national studies of data gathered since the beginning of the
war which provide a statistical analysis of the humanitarian situation.
data was unavailable.
Kabila is the first Congolese president to make a serious attempt at serious
economic reform and for the first time in
several years the recorded economy is showing signs of growth. Attempts are also
being made to bring an end to the war in the region, although this does not
appear to have been successful as yet. As a result of the war the needs of youth
have received little attention in the DRC, and youth employment programmes and
skills development are virtually non-existent.
a landlocked mountainous kingdom gained its independence from Britain in 1966. Lesotho
has undergone political instability since 1965. The kingdom currently has a parliamentary constitutional monarchy.
The country held elections in 2002, and the Electoral Institute of South Africa
deemed them credible, free and fair. Despite this, the opposition continues to
boycott government sponsored events.
seems to operate with three youth definitions. The National Youth Policy, UNAIDS
and WHO operate with the 10-24 years age definition, while a youth related
government department uses the 10-35 years definition. A youth expert
(Mkandawire) states that Lesotho’s youth definition is 12-35 years.
literacy (15-24 years) increased from 85.1% in 1985 to 90.5% in 2000 (EAC).
compulsory primary education for children aged 6-12 years with only 68.1%
the only university, the National University of Lesotho has an average yearly
attendance of 1,400 students. There
are 4 vocational and 3 technical schools in Lesotho. One of these schools offers
both technical and vocational training. The total enrolment rate at technical
and vocational schools in Lesotho is 1, 859. There is a renewed strategic plan
has been focused on consolidating education sectors in order to increase the
number of enrolment and the quality of education.
was not available.
estimates of youth unemployment range between 44% and 65%-70% (Ministry of
Environment, Youth and Gender).
no youth specific data was available, the unemployment rate appears to have
decreased since 1997, as it was registered at 34.2% inclusive of migrant labour.
the 72.7% economically active, 8.1% worked for government, 1.8% worked for
parastatals and 21.5% work in the private sector (LFS 1999/00). Given that the
Lesotho’s economy is largely based on subsistence agriculture and livestock
about 68.6% of those employed are involved in subsistence farming.
as the fourth worst hit country, HIV/AIDS is the largest health threat for
Lesotho. In 1999 the HIV/AIDS adult prevalence rate was 23.57% with an estimated
240 000 living with HIV/AIDS.
HIV/AIDS youth prevalence rate (15-24 years) was estimated at 24.75%-51.4% for
women and 11.31%-23.49% for males (UNAIDS 2002).
to CARE it is common amongst the youth in Lesotho to have multiple partners.
Despite information on HIV/AIDS many people still practice unprotected sex. The
use of contraceptives also appears to be low as 52% of young women have children
before reaching the age of 19. While the government has prioritized HIV/AIDS and
STD education, a private sector coalition aimed at the prevention rather than
treatment of HIV/AIDS was launched in 2002. The coalition comprised of the
association of Lesotho Employers, CARE and International Organization for
Migration. UNDP in collaboration with UNDP will support the formation,
functioning and expansion of youth networks to further advocacy on HIV/AIDS and
inculcate youth with prevention and management of the disease.
unemployment and high level of drug and alcohol abuse are the main concerns of
ministry of Gender, Youth and Sports handles socio-economic issues facing youth.
This ministry coordinates the National Youth Policy of Lesotho in cooperation
with other youth-serving ministries and youth organizations (UN). Further
information on the National Youth Policy was unavailable. The Lesotho Youth
Federation, an umbrella body for youth organizations and clubs is another
organization focusing on youth related issues.
1998, a National Employment Policy was adopted. The policy was aimed at
promoting full productive and freely chosen employment and providing skill and
knowledge for the work force. The National Environment Youth Corps project aimed
to create employment opportunities for youth through training on environmental
management and rehabilitation. The government set itself millennium goals of
eradicating poverty, achieving primary education, promoting gender equality,
improving mental health and fighting HIV/AIDS. It is still pursuing the
achievement of these goals.
information on these policies and programmes was unavailable.
faced by youth such as youth unemployment, the prevalence of youth HIV/AIDS
which is exacerbated by the unchanging sexual behavior amongst the youth can be
overcome by clear youth policies and a stable political environment.
Republic of Malawi is currently a democratic state, ruled by a multi-party
system consisting of a total of four political parties under the presidency of
Dr. Baliki Muluzi, after being colonised for 73 years and ruled by a
dictatorship until the early 1990’s. Malawi is a very small country with a
very large population. About 65.3% of Malawi’s population live below poverty
line making it one of Africa’s poorest countries (Population Census).
Malawi National Youth Policy defines youth as those between the ages of 14-30
years and in some cases this is extended to 35 years. However, the UN definition
(15-24 years) is also often used.
total population’s literacy rate was 58% in which female literacy was
significantly lower (43.4%) than male literacy (72.8%) in 1999 (CIA). In 1998,
youth literacy (15-24 years) was 82.1% for males and 70.7% for females (NSO).
to the Malawian government, the education system consists of 8 years of
schooling, 4 years each for both primary and secondary school, and it is
compulsory for those aged 6-14 years. The net enrolment rate at primary was
65.7%, while the gross enrolment rates were 16% at secondary level and only 0.6%
at university level (NSO). Malawi has very high drop out rates, YES estimates
that about 500 000 young people dropout of school or fail their examinations.
has 4 000 primary schools, 70 858 secondary schools, 108 846 distance education
centres and two universities. There was no clear information on the skills
training available to youth, although it seems youth have access to various
training programmes on HIV/AIDS, life skills and entrepreneurship. There have
been programmes set up to provide staff with re-training, job counselling and
entrepreneurship training. Many youth are not formally employed which means that
few are beneficiaries of these kinds of training programmes.
on the impact of education on employability was limited, although there are
indications that poor education, particularly in the rural areas limits
employability (ActionAid). Furthermore, females with secondary education are
generally more employable (Kamkondo 1994).
1998, the economic activity of the 15-19 years age group was 36.8% in which
female economic activity was higher (43.5%) than male economic activity (29.3%).
The economic activity of the 20-24 years age group was 72.8%. In the 20-24 years
age group, young women’s economic activity still surpassed young men’s at
74.5% compared to 71.1% for men.
youth specific data was available regarding sectors in which youth were
economically active or employed.
that information on youth sector employment was unavailable, it can be argued
that employed youth are in the agricultural sector. Three major industries that
contribute to the GDP were agriculture (40%), the services industry slightly
higher at 41% and the industrial sector contributing 19%. While the industrial
and services sector were amongst the leading sectors contributing to the GDP,
these sectors had much lower employment rates compared to the agricultural
sector. The agricultural sector accounted for 86.64% of those employed, while
the services and industrial sectors contributed 8.44% and 4.92% respectively.
information was obtainable on the historical trends of youth employment,
although the NSO describes the Malawian labour market as characterised by single
gender mobility and high levels of unemployment.
reports that various factors affect the general population’s employment
levels. These range from natural disasters such as droughts and floods to lack
of access to education, public transport and access to markets.
Malawian National Aids Commission estimated that HIV/AIDS prevalence among the
14-59 year age group was 14%. The urban HIV/AIDS prevalence rate is higher at
30% compared to the 10% in the rural areas.
1997, youth HIV/AIDS prevalence rate was 13% (NACP). UNAIDS estimates that young
men’s HIV prevalence rate was 5.08%-7.68%, while young women’s prevalence
estimates are higher, at 11.91%-17.87%. Age among women is another factor that
determines HIV infection or risk. Teenage women’s HIV incidence was 6%
compared to women over 35 where it was only 1%.
is projected that by 2005, 25% and as much as 50% of people currently employed
in the urban based sectors would have died of AIDS. FAO also predicted that
smallholder agriculture would be particularly vulnerable to the effect of
HIV/AIDS (Policy Project 2000).
KAPB survey was conducted in Malawi exploring youth’s HIV/AIDS knowledge,
attitude, practice and behaviour. However the survey data was not accessible.
are a number or challenges facing Malawian youth. These range from unemployment
and underemployment, lack of vocational training, sexual harassment to HIV/AIDS
and STDs, drug and alcohol abuse, teenage pregnancy and early marriage.
National Youth Policy aims to address youth unemployment, educational
opportunities, youth non-involvement in decision making, youth crime and
deviance, teenage pregnancy and drug and alcohol abuse. Other issues covered in
the policy are high population growth rates and the increasing prevalence of
HIV/AIDS. Another policy geared to have a positive effect on youth was the
Universal Free Primary School Education Policy.
National Youth Policy offers guidelines of action on the following areas;
education, training and empowerment, science and technology and environment,
population, health and nutrition and social services and recreation, sports and
culture. SEDOM and the Youth Department have worked together to develop
entrepreneurship training material as well as provide financial assistance for
business. This programme is facilitated through the Malawi Youth Development and
there was information available on Malawi’s National Youth Policy, further
information on its implementation was unavailable.
majority of Malawians are employed in the agricultural sector, but government
expenditure is only 15%. The government is currently formulating and
implementing a strategy aimed at increasing crop production. Apart from its
agricultural sector, Malawi has the potential to expand its mining sector as the
country has rich reserves of unexploited uranium, coal and bauxite. Malawi’s
economic outlook 2003 is mixed as it faces difficult agricultural conditions and
low investment, but should gain relief through HIPC.
is an independent island republic with a democratic government and gained
independence from Britain in 1968. Mauritian territory is made up of the island
of Mauritius as well as the island of Rodrigues to the east, two tiny
dependencies to the north, and some twenty uninhabited islands just off the
Mauritian government defines youth as all male and female persons aged between
14 and 29 years living in the Republic of Mauritius (National Youth Policy,
has one of the highest literacy rates in Africa. According to the Mauritian
Central Statistical Office, 85% of those aged fifteen and above were literate in
2002 (males: 89%, females: 82%).
high literacy rate is partly attributable to the fact that education in
Mauritius is free at all levels from pre-primary school to university. Formal
instruction at primary school level (standard 1 – 6) is compulsory. Secondary
level is not compulsory and consists of six years of instruction (forms 1-6). In
form 5 students take the School Certificate exam, and those who pass take the
Higher School Certificate exam in form 6.
terms of skills training available to youth, a comprehensive network of
vocational training institutes is coordinated by the Industrial and Vocational
Training Board (IVTB). A Training Advisory Committee (TAC) has been set up in
the IVTB to formulate and implement training programmes based on the
requirements of industries. The IVTB operates the
School of Electronics in collaboration with Siemens
to train technicians in the electrical and electronic sectors. Other IVTB
schools include a school of jewellery,
printing and footwear and
leathercraft. In addition, the IVTB operates 14
other centres which provide training courses in the fields of
engineering, precision plastics, design, textiles, hotel and tourism,
hydraulics, plumbing, electrical installation, management, carpentry, metal and
wood machining. A further 60 private training institutions are registered under
the IVTB to cater for training needs in areas such as agriculture, engineering,
hotel and tourism, information technology, management, office skills and
data was available on the impact of education on employability.
make up approximately 23% of the labour force (UN, 1994). In the 15-19 year age
group, 63% of male youth and 81% of female youth are economically inactive
(usually because they are involved in further studies). However, these numbers
drop substantially in the 20-24 year age group, where only 14% of male youth and
49% of female youth economically inactive (Central Statistical Office, 2003). In
the 25-29 year age group, only 4% of males are economically inactive, compared
to 45% of women. A large disparity exists between economically active males and
females, but this is not the case with employment rates (CSO, 2003). Of youth
aged 15-24 years, 78.4% of males and 77.6% of females are employed (UN, 1995).
data was available on historical trends in youth employment and unemployment.
principal sectors are manufacturing, tourism, textile and sugar cane processing.
The agricultural and manufacturing industries are important in Mauritius, but
the tourism and textiles industries now make up the bulk of the country’s
income. Other industries include food processing (largely sugar milling),
chemicals, metal products, transport equipment and non-electrical machinery.
was not data available on levels of youth employment.
to the UNAIDS Epidemiological Fact Sheet (2002), the adult prevalence of
HIV/AIDS in Mauritius is 0.1%. An estimated 700 adults (15-49 years) were living
with HIV/AIDS at the end of 2001, and fewer than 100 children (0-15 years) were
estimated to be infected.
to the low numbers on general population HIV/AIDS prevalence, there are no
youth-specific figures available.
low prevalence of HIV in Mauritius means that the epidemic has not had a
dramatic effect on the Mauritian economy, but the movement of both Mauritians
and foreign tourists in and out of the country may change this and highlights
the need for continued prevention programmes.
first case of HIV-AIDS was registered in Mauritius in 1987, and in the same year
the Ministry of Health and Quality of Life implemented a National AIDS Control
and Prevention Programme. A mother to child transmission programme was
established in 1998, and a protocol has been established for HIV positive
pregnant women to be provided with antiretroviral treatment (AZT) during
pregnancy and delivery.
is probably the only SADC country for which information on the key challenges
facing youth was unavailable.
government has developed a national youth policy, which is coordinated by the
Ministry of Youth and Sports in cooperation with other youth serving ministries
and youth organizations. The youth policy identifies 5 priority target groups,
namely in school and out of school youth, unemployed youth, underprivileged
youth and youth at risk. Strategic areas such as employment, education and
training are included.
National Youth Council has been established to facilitate networking between all
youth groups and agencies concerned with the young. The Council also links
government and young people and facilitates resource mobilisation.
information relating to the extent of youth policy implementation was not
gaining independence, Mauritius has developed from a low-income, agriculturally
based economy to a middle-income diversified economy with growing industrial,
financial, and tourist sectors. This remarkable achievement has been reflected
in more equitable income distribution, increased life expectancy, lowered infant
mortality, and a much improved infrastructure. The skills training available to
youth on hotel and tourism, as well as training in engineering fields should
assist youth in undertaking economic activities in metal and chemical
processing, which form some of the key sectors in Mauritius.
after gaining independence from Portugal in 1975 Mozambique was plunged into a
civil war, which ended only in 1992. Ravaged by the civil war and by a severe
drought followed by flooding in the South, the country’s development has been
slow and patchy. Mozambique relies heavily on foreign aid, and in 2001 it was
estimated that 70% of the population lived below the poverty line (CIA World
are conflicting reports of Mozambique’s official definition of youth. While
some sources indicate a youth definition of 14-35 years, others indicate a
definition of 18-35 years. The UN definition of 15-24 years is used in
international reports on Mozambique.
1997, around 41% of the Mozambican adult population, and 51.1% of the youth
population (UN definition) were unable to read or write. Youth illiteracy rates
have declined dramatically since then, standing at 39.4% in 2000, and are
expected to decline further to 33.7% in 2005 (UNESCO).
Mozambican government has instituted 7 years of compulsory education for all 6
year-olds. Despite this, enrolment rates remain fairly low. In 2000/2001 only
54% of all children eligible for primary school education were enrolled in
primary school (UNESCO). The civil war may account for the low enrolment ratios
in Mozambique, as it left approximately two-thirds of Mozambique’s 2 million
primary-school age children without classrooms (ILO).
government has formed and further strengthened alliances with non-governmental
organizations in order to alleviate unemployment. Relevant programmes include
the Iniciativa Jovem, which provides
training and basic education to excluded youth in Maputo and other priority
regions around the country. This programme identified the burgeoning tourist
industry as an ideal point entry point for youth employment and non-formal
education. The Peace Education Project targets a much larger group of
disadvantaged youth, including former child soldiers. These projects provide
sector-specific numeracy and literacy skills, as well as manual crafts and
skills to disadvantaged youth.
above described initiatives allowed youth to participate in the popular economy
which accounts for 43% of the Mozambican economy. It is estimated that
from 1992 to 1998, 2 200 women and adolescent girls received basic training in
literacy, technical skills and small credit for production activities (Youth at
information was available on youth employability.
2000 it was estimated that 75.78% of youth were economically active (ILO). Youth
thus formed around 27.6% of the economically active population.
sector was the major economic sector by employment, employing 91.3% of
economically active women and 69.6% of economically active men (Instituto de
Estatisticas). After agriculture, the main sectors of employment were services
(13%) and industry (6%). The services sector contributes the largest share to
the GDP, (42%), followed by agriculture (33%) and industry (25%).
was not available.
2001, about 13% of the adult population was infected with HIV (UNAIDS).
HIV/AIDS prevalence rate was between 10.5% and 18.7% for females and 4.4% and
7.8% for males (United Nations Economic Commission for Africa). Furthermore,
UNICEF estimates that 45% of new infections occur in youth aged below 24 years.
data was available.
shows that while 50% of the female population and 76% of the male population
knew about condoms, only 2% of females and 10% of males reported using one the
last time they had sexual intercourse (Libombo, A. and Ustam, M. B. 2001).
challenges facing youth revolve around post-war reconstruction of Mozambique’s
social and economic infrastructure and combating the alarming spread of HIV/AIDS
amongst the youth. The under-resourced Mozambican government has been unable to
undertake major interventions in these areas, and development has been driven by
community-based organisations, such as Kindlimuka.
the government, the Ministry of Culture and Youth coordinates the National Youth
Policy, in cooperation with other youth-serving ministries and youth
organisations. The National Youth Policy focuses on forming collaborative
relationships with youth organisations to address problems facing the youth.
has a national youth programme of action, which emphasises partnerships with
civil society organisations as a means of addressing the social problems of the
youth. Its focus areas include education, community life and policy and
Red Cross has successfully engaged 4 000 youth volunteers and 280 youth leaders
in activities involving environmental education and landmine awareness. Various
programmes are working to reintegrate child soldiers into the community.
has been devastated by floods and a civil war, and remains dependent on foreign
assistance for much of its annual budget. Improvements in its educational and
health systems are imperative to produce a skilled labour force and stop the
increasing rate of HIV/AIDS. Education and skills development should be aligned
with sectors such as the services and industrial sectors. Further training is
agricultural skills is needed, as this sector still forms the predominant sector
of employment and contributes a large part to the country’s GDP.
is a former German colony which was annexed by South Africa after World War II.
In 1988 South Africa agreed to end its administration and the first democratic
elections were held in 1990. Namibia is a comparatively peaceful country with a small, scattered population.
does not appear to be a clear official definition of youth in Namibia. Some
define youth as 15 – 30 years, but the UN definition of youth (15 – 24
years) is also commonly used.
literacy rate in Namibia has risen from 57% in 1970 to 82% in 2000. Literacy
rates amongst youth aged 15 – 24 years have also increased, but the gender
disparity in this age group has remained relatively constant. In 2000 the
literacy rate for youth was 90% for males and 93% for females (UNESCO).
has instituted 10 years of compulsory schooling for children starting from the
age of six. However, the net enrolment ratio for Namibian primary schools is
relatively low at 82% for the year 2000/2001. The enrolment ratio for secondary
schools (38%) was substantially lower for the same year, indicating that the
implementation of compulsory education has been problematic. At all levels of
education the enrolment rates are higher for females than males.
1994 the Namibian government passed the National Vocational Training Act to
address the development of apprenticeships as well as institutional, community
and industry based training. Soon after this a National Vocational Training
Board was established to advise the government on issues pertaining to
vocational education and training. In addition, a Namibia Training and Testing
Centre (NTTC) was established to set standards for the vocational centres. At
present there are five registered vocational training centres offering 16
technical trades and 5 commercial, hospitality and craft trades. The two
qualifications available at these centres are the National Vocational
Certificate and the National Vocational Diploma. There are also 7 Community
Skills Development Centres (COSDECs) which cater for community training needs.
These COSDECs are run by communities and coordinated by the government.
data was not available.
formed approximately 42% of those unemployed in 2000 (ILO). In the same year, a
higher proportion of male than female youth were economically active (male
youth: 64%, female youth: 42%).
has also been a decline in the rate of economically active youth in recent
years. In 1990, 56% of youth were economically active, but by 2000 this number
had decreased to 53% and is expected to decline further to 51% by 2010 (ILO).
was not available.
Namibian economy is heavily dependent on the mining of non-fuel minerals such as
diamonds, gold, copper, lead and zinc for export. However, the mining sector
employs only 3% of the population and half of the population depends on
subsistence agriculture for its livelihood. The services sector contributes to
61% of the GDP, followed by the industrial (28%) and agricultural (11%) sectors.
Agriculture accounts for 47% of employment, while services account for 33% and
industry the remaining 20% (CIA, 2000).
had an HIV prevalence of 22% in 2002, making it one of the four worst affected
countries in the world (UNAIDS).
HIV prevalence for youth was estimated to be between 19% and 29% for females,
and lower for males at between 9% and 13% (UN Economic Commission for Africa).
According to the Ministry of Health and Social Services (2001), HIV/AIDS is now
the leading cause of death in Namibia.
awareness of the issues surrounding HIV/AIDS appears to be fairly low amongst
Namibian youth. A study of Windhoek youth aged 15 – 25 years in 2003 found
that common HIV prevention terms are misunderstood and that youth are afraid or
unwilling to discuss condoms use. A similar study by the University of Namibia
and USAID revealed that 60% of youth aged 15-25 years in Windhoek believed that
they would become infected in the next year. To address the issue of HIV prevention amongst
youth, the government has collaborated with other organizations to develop My Future Is My Choice. This programme aims to provide young people with information
and life skills to prevent HIV infection.
IPPR Youth and Politics Survey 2000 found that the main concerns of Namibian
youth were unemployment (69%), HIV (32%), crime (25%), poverty (19%), and health
to the UN, the Ministry of Youth and Sports coordinates the National Youth
Policy of Namibia in cooperation with other youth-serving ministries and youth
organizations. However, this information appears to be outdated as the Ministry
of Youth and Sports no longer appears on the government’s list of ministries.
No further information could be found on the National Youth Policy.
terms of other youth initiatives, Namibia has established the Namibia Youth
Employment Summit (YES) Network. The objective is to bring together youth-led
and youth-serving organisations and to disseminate information.
information on the National Youth Policy and related programmes was unavailable.
There were however some projects, such as the Youth Employment Summit (YES)
network but this has only recently been undertaken.
is another SADC country that has rich reserves of minerals, such as diamonds,
copper and lead. The mining sector has the potential to be a leading economic
sector for youth. Linking entrepreneurial skills development to this sector
would provide Namibian youth an opportunity to exploit a potentially wealthy
decades of apartheid rule, South Africa instituted a democratic government in
1994. Currently, South Africa has a multi-party democracy, and holds elections
every five years. South Africa is considered one of the most stable countries in
Africa and has good prospects for successful economic and social development.
Despite this, the country must overcome the legacy of apartheid in which more
than 50% of the population live below the poverty line.
Africa has two operating youth definitions; the first definition of 14-35 years
was instituted in 1996 through the National Youth Policy. The second definition
of 15-28 years was instituted by the Youth Development Framework to set the
parameters of beneficiaries for youth programmes.
rates for the year 2002 were reported as 91.3% (Human Development Report) and
85% (CIA World Fact Book). Although dated, the UN indicates that youth literacy
was 86.8% in 1985. According to the education policy in South Africa young
children are expected to attend school for a period of 6 to 15 years.
Africa has a number of 25 Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs)
intended to provide training to the general population. The SETAs are
responsible for developing and implementing learnership programmes in areas
ranging from banking, food, police, and security to wholesale and retail. This
training is intended to prepare South Africans for employment or
May 2002, 7,700 youth were enrolled in the SETAs.
number of factors contribute to whether a young person can secure employment.
For example, the lack of work experience and the need for skilled labour force
in the market contribute to whether a young person can secure employment. The
Youth 2000 study indicates that 73% of those with no education are unemployed,
compared to 68% of those with secondary education and 58% of those with matric.
Youth unemployment is lowest amongst those with a post-matric education (27%),
which indicates that unemployment levels tend to decrease with better education.
data was available.
Three sources dated between 1996 to 2000
indicate that youth unemployment is high in South Africa. In 1996, 30% of youth aged 15-35 years were employed and 20.7% were
unemployed (Census 1996). In 1999, youth comprised 70% of the unemployed,
and 46% of the working population and 33% of the self-employed (OHS 1999). In
2000, 52% of the economically
active youth were unemployed (CASE 2000).
1996 data indicates that the unemployment rate is higher among young women and
Africans, while rural areas also tend to have higher unemployment rates than
urban areas. The In terms of the age breakdown, the OHS (1999) indicates that
youth unemployment is highest among the 25-29 years age group.
There does not appear to have been any change in this throughout the last two
Youth 2000 study states that of the 79% of youth (16-35 years) that were
economically active at the time of the study, 52% were unemployed (expanded
definition), 35% were in full-time employment, 9% had part time or casual
employment and 4% were self employed (CASE 2000).
comparison between Census 1996 and 2001 indicates that the employment rates in
the community & social services, trade and finance sectors have increased.
Currently of the 9.1 million employed, 29.1% are in the community and social
services, 13.7% in the trade sector and 9.4% are in the finance sector. The CIA
World Fact Book shows that the services sector contributes 45% to the GDP, while
agricultural and industrial sectors contribute 30% and 25% respectively (CIA
World Fact Book est. 1999).
no specific data was available, levels of employment could be affected by
geographical location, sex, age, skills and qualifications. Additional factors
that could contribute to levels of employment is the structure of the labour
market and policies
are disparities in the reported HIV prevalence rate in South Africa. However, a
South African source states that the adult population HIV infection rate stands
at 11.4% (Nelson Mandela/HSRC 2002).
Nelson Mandela/HSRC (002) reports a prevalence rate of 9.3% for those aged 15-24
years and 15.5% for people aged 25 and above. HIV/AIDS prevalence rates peak for
women between aged 25-29 years and men 30-35 years (CARE 2002). This shows that
young people are at an increased risk of contracting HIV.
on Nelson Mandela/HSRC study (2002), there were no significant differences
between HIV prevalence of working and non-working people. Alternatively,
NMG-Levy Consultants and Actuaries (2002) report that of the 20% of the
workforce is HIV positive and that 3-4% suffer from HVI/AIDS related diseases.
While no clear information was available
on youth knowledge of HIV/AIDS prevention, the Khomanani Campaign - caring
together campaign is a broad communications campaign initiated by the Department
of Health that includes information on perceptions of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in
Youth 2000 study reports that the majority of youth are concerned about
unemployment (41%), while a higher proportion of youth were concerned more with
crime (14%) than with HIV/AIDS (11%).
has instituted a number of policies and programmes aimed job creation and
poverty eradication. For example, the SMME strategy which is supported by a wide
range of institutions and policies forms the main strategy for job creation and
poverty eradication. Examples of human resource development policies are the
Skills Development Act (1998) and the Employment Equity Act (1998). The National
Skills Fund supports skills development programmes.
Youth Policy (1996), National Youth Policy Framework (2000) aims for the
promotion of youth achievement and development, through integrated,
cross-sectoral planning and service provision. The framework targets young women
and men with disabilities, unemployed men and women, school aged out-of-school
women and men and rural women and men.
Youth Policy Framework has been adopted; however, the National Youth Commission
and South African Youth Council to implement policies both have limited capacity
to implement these policies. For example the National Youth Service has not been
implemented, although there have been 50 000 youth would be recruited for
learnership programmes carried out by the SETAs. Progress in dealing with youth
issues across government departments and in civil society at large, remains
limited and fragmented. The Non-governmental sector seems more successful at
As one of Africa’s fastest growing
economies, South Africa has the opportunity to transform it wealth into
sustainable livelihoods for its population, particularly youth. With a fairly
stable democracy that is almost ten years old, South African still has to extend
economic gains to the youth of the country. This can be done through extensive
collaborations with various emerging sectors.
gained independence from Britain on 6th September 1968. Since then,
it has been ruled by a hereditary monarchy, which, despite hard-won democratic
reforms during the 1990s, has maintained a large degree of judicial, legislative
and executive control of the country. Youth
organisations continued to be active in their opposition to the prevailing
political dispensation throughout the 1990s.
have been defined in Swaziland as any person between the ages of 12 and 30
years. Most sources, however, use the UN definition of 15-24 years.
1999, 78.9% of the Swazi population could read and write. Of
the entire youth population, 10.4% of males and 8.8% of females were illiterate
in 2000, while by 2005 it is expected that this figure will decrease to 8.4 % of
males and 6.7% of females.
legislation stipulates seven years of compulsory education (World Bank EdStats).
In 2000/2001, 93% of all children eligible for primary school education were
enrolled in primary schools (UNESCO).
who have not completed secondary education rely heavily upon the National
Handicraft Training Centre to provide them with marketable skills, as the centre
provides training in entrepreneurship and various handicrafts (Ministry of
Enterprise and Employment). Due to limited capacity, the enrolment numbers at
the centre are quite low. In 2000/01 the centre took in 146 and 150 in 2001/02
increasing to 155 for 2002/03.
data was unavailable.
recent statistic indicates that in 2001 the overall unemployment rate stood at
around 34% (CIA World Fact Book). In the same year, youth economic activity
stood at 37% (ILO) A dated statistic indicates that in
1985, approximately 61.25% of youth were engaged in economic activity, and youth
formed 25% of labour force (Youth at the UN).
services sector accounts for the major portion of Swaziland’s GDP (47%)
followed by industry (43%) and agriculture (10%) with 80% of the population
involved in subsistence agriculture (CIA World Fact Book). The major economic sector
by paid employment is services (32.6%), followed by agriculture and forestry
(21.4%) (Swaziland Central Statistical Office).
2002 it was estimated that approximately 35.6% of adults (aged 15+) were HIV
positive (CIA World Fact Book).
2000 the overall national HIV prevalence among 15-19 year olds was 25.9%
(UNAIDS). Female youth infection rate was estimated at 39.5% in 2001(World
awareness amongst youth of HIV transmission can be inferred from a UNAIDS survey
of the youth population. While figures for males are unavailable, the study
showed that 43.1% of females aged 15-19 and 43.4% of females aged 20-24
correctly rejected the two most common misperceptions about HIV/AIDS and knew
that a healthy looking person can transmit HIV.
have played an important role in hastening political reform and the extension of
democratic institutions (such as universal suffrage and nominal division of
powers) during the 1990s. Youth organisations continued to be active in their
opposition to the prevailing political dispensation. In
2000 the 5th General Congress of the Swaziland Youth Congress
(SWAYOCO), an active partner in the social movement of the 1990s, was violently
broken up by the police. The
government recognises the rights of national youth movements to organise on a
non-governmental basis, but with the proviso that such organisations be convened
for non-political purposes.
Ministry of Youth co-ordinates the National Youth Policy of Swaziland in
cooperation with other youth-serving ministries and the Swaziland National Youth
Council (SNYC). The SNYC was founded in 1987, and has a membership consisting of
20 national youth and student organizations, including Boy Scouts, Girl Guides,
Red Cross Youth and Youth Relief Association. The National Youth Policy is still
awaiting ratification by the Parliament (Youth at the UN).
was not available.
youth are faced with an increasingly undemocratic monarchy; youth activism is
being repressed by government forces. As the above sections probably indicate,
Swaziland also does not keep detailed records on the situation of youth, as most
of the data was obtained from external sources. One of the factors that would
contribute to sustainable youth development is a transformation in the political
climate in Swaziland.
Tanzania became a multi-party democracy in 1995 and
held another round of elections in 2000, in which both elections were deemed
free and fair, except in Zanzibar. The government consists of the Union
Government, which has authority over the mainland Tanzania. The Zanzibar
Revolutionary Government has authority over all matters which are not Union
Integrated Labour Force Survey (2000/1) adopted the UN definition of 15-24
2000, youth literacy had increased to 81.6% from 77.4% in 1985 (Human
has seven years of compulsory free primary education. Only less than half of
eligible children enroll at schools every year and out of that number,
approximately 80% complete their primary schooling.
are 53 Folk Development Colleges that offer practical skills training in
domestic science, carpentry, masonry and tin smiting. Additionally, there are 19
regional training centres and 50 Vocational Education and Training Authority
(VETA) institutions which offer training programmes to primary and secondary
school leavers. Access and usage of these programmes is hindered by the lack of
funds and lack of information by potential beneficiaries. Training opportunities
such as computer training are also offered by private training institutions.
academic and practical courses are offered at tertiary level, Tanzania’s
agricultural economy is unable to absorb a high number of skilled workforce. The
result is that learners with high school education or above are less employable
than those with primary or less education. The number of unemployed youth with
secondary education or higher has increased at more than twice the rate of youth
with less or no education.
data was available.
1998, 90% of the labour force was involved in agriculture (CIA World Fact Book).
Youth aged 15-24 years represent 28% of the total labour force, and
approximately 87% of this number is employed.
a lesser extent, youth find employment in the private informal sector and the
NGO sector. For example, 0.2% of youth work for the central or local government,
0.1% work in parastatal organizations and 3.9% of youth do house work duties
Tanzania’s agricultural sector remains the predominant sector of employment,
the private formal and informal sector employment rates are increasing.
was not available.
that rural employment levels are significantly higher than urban employment
levels and that the majority of employed youth are in the private traditional
agricultural sector (83%) suggests that geographical location contributes to the
ability to find employment.
prevalence for the general population was estimated at 7.8% in 2001.
HIV/AIDS prevalence rate was estimated at 6.4%-9.7% for 2002 (UNAIDS).
Furthermore, youth accounted for 60% of all new HIV/AIDS infections. Despite
this, youth HIV/AIDS awareness is generally good.
on the impact of HIV/AIDS on employment was unavailable.
example, in 1996 youth had knowledge of at least two acceptable HIV preventative
methods (PSI), and condom usage and sales had increased (Tanzania Demographic
Health Survey 1996). Tanzania has a National AIDS Control Programme and a number
of NGO’s that are active in HIV/AIDS education and information provision.
of the key challenges facing Tanzanian youth are increasing rate of urbanization
and HIV/AIDS, and unemployment.
has a number of youth programmes, policies and legislation that are aimed at
improving youth employment. The Youth Development Fund (1994) provides revolving
loans to youth in the informal sector in order to create self-employment.
Another fund, the National Entrepreneurship Development Fund (1993/4),
offers financial support to youth farmers and livestock keepers since
agriculture remains the main source of income-generating projects for the youth.
Foreign funders are also active in youth employment creation initiatives.
National Employment Policy of 1997 advocates strategic employment promotion, and
the creation of an enabling environment for the private sector, NGO’s and
CBO’s to effectively participate in employment promotion. In addition, the
National Employment Policy of 2000 functions as a guiding framework that
advocates for gender equality in employment and the creation of sustainable and
productive employment that would lead to poverty eradication.
National Employment Promotion Services Act of 1999 and Vision 2025 are also
policies geared at increasing youth employment. The National Employment
Promotion Act provides employment placement through employment promotion
agencies. Other focus areas of the Act are; self employment, vocational guidance
and counseling and the provision of labour market and occupational information.
Self-employment provision also forms the main focus of Vision 2025, which
amongst other aims emphasizes high quality education that would complement the
developmental needs of the country.
detailed information was found on youth policies, there was no data on the
extent to which these policies and programmes have been successful.
Tanzanian government has the responsibility to curb political instability and
forcefully implement some of the progressive youth policies and programmes. The
focus on youth entrepreneurships must be complemented with a good education. The
country’s education policy needs to be translated into high enrolment rates of
obtained its independence from Britain in 1964 and was under a system of 1-party
rule for the next 27 years. In 1991, Zambia held its first multi-party elections
in 1991. Subsequent elections were held in 1996 and 2001, both won by the
Movement for Multi-Party Democracy.
seems to operate with three youth definitions; 13-19 years, the UN definition of
15-24 years and the 15-25 years definition. The latter is used by some
literacy rate (15-24years) increased from 77.2% in 1985 to 88.2% in 2000 (UN
an impressive literacy rate, the Zambian education system has deteriorated over
the last two decades. Zambia has 7 years of compulsory primary school education
which is set to increase to 9 years by 2015. The implementation of this policy
is hindered by problems such as low learner enrolment and the lack of proper
educational resources (USAID). Other challenges include inaccessibility of
schools, outdated curriculums and high drop-out rates at a primary school level.
Tertiary education also has its challenges, as the University of Zambia appears
to have been closed in 2003 (GTZ).
has some skills training programmes for youth. The Technical Education,
Vocational and Entrepreneurship Training (TEVETA) was established by government
to train school leavers, entrepreneurs in the formal and informal sector. The
Zambian Youth Service also equips youth with skills such as carpentry, plumbing,
brick works, tailoring, domestic science, leather work, agriculture and other
unemployment levels of those with tertiary education are slightly lower than
those with little to no education. However, those with low levels of education
are barely able to support themselves. There is a need to match educational
attainment with complementary job creation programmes.
to ILO/SAMAT 2000, Zambia had a labour force of 4,037,000 in 1996, in which
youth (12-24 years) formed 33.4% and 67.5% of the unemployed. In 1999, the youth
unemployment level (12-19 years) was 38% and stood at 29% for those aged 20-24
years (Monitor for Human Rights and Development Issues). In 2000, the Zambian
Central Statistical Office stated that those aged 15-25 years constituted half
of the total 6 million unemployed.
informal sector employs 78% of the youth labour force, while the formal sector
only employs 11% (SARPN).
2000 agriculture accounted for 24% of the GDP, while industry accounted for 25%
and services 51%. The major sector of employment was the agricultural sector,
while a smaller proportion of the population was employed in the industrial
sector (6%) and services sector (9%) (2001 World Bank).
struggling economy seems a significant factor of the high unemployment levels.
faces health problems ranging from malaria to cholera and HIV/AIDS. HIV/AIDS
currently poses the largest health threat as the public health sector is
stretched to the maximum with the outbreak of the pandemic. In 2001, HIV/AIDS
prevalence for the 15-49 age group was 21.52% (UNDP). However, the Zambian
Health Demographics Survey estimates HIV/AIDS prevalence for the same age group
as 16%. The youth HIV/AIDS prevalence (15-20 years) was estimated at 20%
government and foreign donors are planting resources to help fight the spread of
HIV/AIDS through education. There is an increase in awareness of HIV/AIDS in
Zambia and behavioral changes amongst the youth have been observed. The ZDHS
found that a third of youth aged 20-24 years knew of two acceptable ways of
preventing HIV/AIDS. Although no concrete information was available, HIV/AIDS
appears to be an economic threat as it is highest among those (30-35 years) at
their economic peak.
of the biggest challenges facing Zambian youth is unemployment, while other
challenges include the threat of HIV infection and a deteriorating education
Zambian government recognizes youth unemployment as a major problem. For
example, in 1994 a youth policy was being developed to improve youth
1994 a National Programme of Action for Youth Development was also aimed at
combating youth unemployment through the promotion of small-scale enterprises
and skills development. This
programme was later revised into a five-year plan covering 1997-2002. This plan
encompassed a wide range of issues such as job-creation, health, democratic
governance and vocational training. The plan sought to provide practical skills
such as carpentry, tailoring, vegetable growing, motor mechanics, as well
lack of resources deterred the implementation of the Youth policy.
is rich in mineral resources and its mining industry is its dominant sector and
major earner of foreign exchange. The oil industry is another important element
in the economy. These sectors have the potential to serve as employment and
self-employment ventures for youth given that the educational and skills needs
of the sector are matched in Zambia’s educational system.
Zimbabwe is a former British colony that
is currently experiencing political turmoil. In 1965 unilateral independence was
declared to avoid implementing majority rule. This led to international
condemnation and civil war, but it was not until 1980 that UN sanctions and a
guerrilla uprising led to free multiracial elections and independence. Robert
Mugabe has dominated the political system ever since, and his increasingly repressive
rule has led to the current state of political and economic crisis.
There is also no clear official
definition of what constitutes ‘youth’ in Zimbabwe. Mkandawire states that
the youth definition in Zimbabwe is 15-30 years.
In the 1980s a massive school-building
exercise was launched and school enrolment levels increased significantly.
Almost universal literacy for under 25s was achieved, with 98% of youth aged
15-25 years being literate (UNESCO, 2003). However, in recent years the
education system has experienced a decline due to the continuing political
Primary school is compulsory and runs
for 7 years from age 5-12 years. This is followed by 4 years of lower secondary
school (Forms I-IV), at the end of which students take the Cambridge School
Certificate (CSC) or CGE ‘O’ Level Certificate. At Upper Secondary (Forms V
and VI), students study only three subjects and are awarded the Cambridge Higher
School Certificate (HSC) or CGE ‘A’ Level Certificate.
In terms of skills development the
government has recruited youth into national Youth Training Centres in four of
the eight provinces and claims that the aim of this is to provide skills
training in the form of the Training for
Enterprise programme. However, reports from the trainees at these camps
indicate that the training offered in these camps is of a military kind. Youth
from these camps form youth militia, and there are numerous reports of their
involvement in intimidation and violence.
1992 almost half (44%) of youth in the labour force were unemployed
(Standard/ILO definition). Between 200,000 and 300,000 school leavers enter the
job market every year, but the formal sector is only able to absorb about 30,000
new entrants (Office of the Minister of State in the President’s Office,
informal sector is therefore the only feasible option for the hundreds of
thousands of youth, but it provides no guarantee of employment or financial
security. Migration to neighbouring countries has steadily increased as more
people seek employment opportunities that are no longer available in Zimbabwe.
youth specific data was unavailable, Zimbabwe is currently facing an economic
crisis, characterised by an exodus of investors, runaway inflation and a fuel
and foreign currency shortage that has disrupted the functioning of the economy.
Unemployment has soared from 22% in 1992 (ILO/SAMAT, 2000) to an estimated 80%
in 2002 (IMF, World Bank).
In 2001, services contributed 55% to
GDP, while industry contributed 25% and agriculture 20% (World Development
Indicators, 2001). The majority of people (66%) are employed in the agricultural
sector, with a quarter (24%) being employed in the service sector and 10% in the
industrial sector (CIA, 1996).
Zimbabwe has an HIV prevalence rate of
34%, one of the highest in Africa. This is a sharp increase from the estimated
25% two years earlier (USAID, 2002).
It is difficult to obtain clear figures
regarding the prevalence rate of HIV/AIDS amongst youth in Zimbabwe, but all
indications are that HIV infection is likely to be extremely high amongst youth.
The government has adopted a national
strategic framework on HIV/AIDS and a National AIDS policy. The National AIDS
Council was created in May 2000 under the auspices of the Ministry of Health and
an AIDS levy has been introduced to generate resources to support HIV/AIDS
interventions (USAID, 2002).
of the key challenges facing youth are unemployment, violence and HIV/AIDS.
The government implemented the
Zimbabwean Employment Creation Act (ZECA) in 2000. This broad strategy addresses
economic growth and job creation as a whole and does not target youth
The main national youth coordinating
body is the Zimbabwe National Youth Council (ZNYC). For students the national
coordinating body is the Zimbabwe National Students Union (ZINASU) and consists
of approximately 5,000 students at university level. The Zimbabwe Youth Forum is
a non-profit voluntary NGO registered with the Ministry of Social Welfare and
Ministry of Youth Development, Gender and Employment Creation and is also
actively involved in youth affairs.
There is very little up-to-date
information regarding national youth policies or government programmes.
Zimbabwe’s government website was last updated in March 2000, and does not
provide information regarding government’s initiatives with youth. According
to a representative from the Ministry of National Affairs, Employment Creation
and Co-operatives, the government was in the process of drafting a National
Youth Policy in 2000 (ILO/SAMAT workshop).
It is not clear how far the processes of
implementing these policies has progressed.
There have been youth initiatives that
have been launched in Zimbabwe. However, these initiatives may have been
compromised by a collapsing economy, the increasing
rates of HIV/AIDS and political instability. Despite its economic and political
crisis, Zimbabwe has well established mining and industrial sectors. The
development of these sectors into opportunities for youth would have to be
complemented by social and political stability.
Peters C 2003 –
Youth Development Journal, eleventh edition April 2003
Democratic Republic of Congo, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique,
Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Seychelles opted out of SADC during the course of the study