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TEVETA signs Apprenticeship Contracts with Bell Equipment
May 21, 2024 at 8:22

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TEVETA has signed apprenticeship contracts with Bell Equipment Zambia worth K8.4 million in earthmoving equipment. The apprenticeship contracts are in line with the mining sector productivity and energy transition aspirations of the country.

TEVETA Director General, Cleophas Takaiza commended Bell Equipment for taking up a second cohort of apprentices to support the national Work Based Learning (WBL) framework. Mr. Takaiza said WBL initiatives provided practical experiences for apprentices for smooth transition in the job market. "Apprenticeship is one of the best ways to prepare young people for the job market. They gain both practical experience and industry knowledge to effectively apply themselves in different roles."

And Bell Equipment Zambia Managing Director, Samson Chingozho applauded TEVETA for financing another group of apprentices at a time when the demand from mining companies is outstripping the company's resources to train adequate numbers of such a workforce.

He said the company was grateful for another opportunity to partner with TEVETA, which will make a real difference in the lives of young Zambians, communities and the mining industry. "Our Zambian earthmoving mechanic apprentices are trained at Bell Zambia, which is an ideal teaching facility as we have fully equipped workshops and undertake complete rebuilds of our machines. This provides our apprentices with invaluable, real-life experience, which then culminates in a trade test at our accredited training centre in South Africa."

Apprenticeships are particularly popular in industries that require specialized training and where hands-on experience is crucial for mastery of the craft. Apprenticeships are thus a cornerstone of skills development worldwide. They bridge the gap between theory and practice, allowing students to gain hands-on experience in a real-world environment while providing employers with the opportunity to shape the next generation of skilled workers.

The training of heavy equipment repair and the qualified technicians would improve productivity in the mines by reducing machinery down time. The apprenticeship programme will also enable employability of the youths and fills the skills gap in the mines worldwide as there is pronounced skills flight to other countries from Zambia. The apprenticeship programme has come at a time when the demand from the mining industry is outstripping the number of a competent workforce in heavy duty repair. With the unique challenges of the mining industry, an adequate competent workforce is vital for productivity and minimizing accidents that have huge cost implications on the mine and lives of people.

Apprenticeships are therefore very critical in the mining sector's skills development because they provide specialized training, emphasize safety, offer hands-on experience, and contribute to the growth and sustainability of the industry. They are essential for ensuring that the mining workforce is well-equipped to meet the sector's unique challenges and demands. Such a mining related apprenticeship offers hands-on experience, allowing apprentices to work alongside experienced mine operators and learn through practical application. This experiential learning is invaluable for gaining a deep understanding of the industry's operations.