Thursday, December 8, 2022

NIIE Business Summit discusses job opportunities for youth

Staff Reporter

National Integrate, Innovate and Expand (NIIE) Business Summit organised by Business Association of Nagas (BAN) and supported by Union Ministry of MSME began at administrative block of NER Agri Expo here on Friday.
The first session had five panelists – Nagaland State Rural Livelihood Mission COO (Skills) Menuoneiuto Chadi, Nagaland Building & Other Construction Workers’ Welfare Board CEO and assistant labour commissioner T Chubayanger, ELS International CEO Achen Imchen, Nagaland Contractors’ & Suppliers’ Union president Pele Khezhie and assistant professor in Dept of Civil Engineering, NIT Nagaland and consultant of engineering projects, Government of India, Dr Nzan Ngullie.
They deliberated on the topic “Local employment opportunities for youth”, which was moderated by BAN general secretary and Pinnacle Skills chief executive Dr Yan Murry.
Sharing his views, Ngullie stressed three sectors that Naga youth could explore for employability. He noted that construction sector was becoming increasingly mechanised, adding that youth must be technically trained or skilled so that they were not left behind.
He cautioned that Nagas would not get jobs in oil companies if they came to Nagaland unless they were skilled or had experience. He mentioned that Nagas must be open to undergo skill development trainings and, if possible, gain experience in Gulf countries, so as to come back home and work in oilfields.
Terming agri sector as another sector with employability, Ngullie suggested that Nagas should explore the sector, instead of trying to go out for jobs in hospitality sector. In his address, Chubayanger cautioned that jobs of today would become redundant after a few years and hence urged Naga youth to skill themselves.
He alleged that there was a huge trust deficit in the State between Naga employers and employees, regretting that Nagas did not trust their own people. He disclosed that a study conducted in the State revealed that 99% preferred migrant workers over local workers.
He also noted that unemployment was high as youth were not properly skilled, while those who had were not employable due to ego.
Here, he asserted that Nagas could not claim that there was no jobs in Nagaland.
He said Nagaland had the lowest minimum wage rates in the country, adding that the rates were fixed as per the Minimum Wages Act, insisting that under no circumstances the salary should go below the minimum wage.
Speaking on the occasion, Imchen clarified that from the first day of his entrepreneurial journey, he had tried his best employ Nagas, adding that it made him feel secure and also happy in sharing opportunities with own Naga people.
He further suggested that the State government should carry out awareness drives among local employers, pointing out that Nagas were talented and fast learners. Sending them outside the State and not employing them here was a big loss, he remarked.
Chadi in his address observed that only about 20% of skilled Naga youth remained, while the rest left the State in spite of visible job opportunities here. He wondered what would happen if all those who were trained and skilled returned to their home State suddenly.
Khezhie in his address commented that contractors could provide jobs to Naga youth, but the latter needed to have proper skills. He lamented that local youth were allergic to the word “labour” and said he felt sad to see how most of them were generally averse to doing any work that involved physical labour.
He claimed that many Naga contractors were compelled to bring in hundreds of labourers from outside the State since the local youth were not willing to work. “This is a sad reality for Nagas,” he stated, adding that it was high time the community realised this.
Dr Yan Murry, who was moderator for the first session, said Nagaland was the considered as the State with the highest unemployment (21%), warning that it was a ticking time bomb for the Nagas.
He mentioned that Nagas could not always keep on training and sending youth outside, adding that many non-Nagas were coming in and working for this.
Earlier, welcome address was delivered by BAN executive member Benthungo Kithan, invocation offered by founder Leaders Arise Nagaland & initiator Overseas Naga Association, Apostle Rev Luoliehu Yimsung, and key note address delivered by jt secretary and mission director NSRLM, Imtimenla.

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