Saturday 15 May 2021
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‘Give ECN temporal jobs to the unemployed’- Jauch

Labour expert Herbert Jauch has expressed himself by agreeing with the scores of unemployed youth who demand an explanation from the Electoral Commission of Namibia as to why it intends to employ government employees who already have a means of income for the upcoming elections.
Early this month the electoral commission sent out vacancy notices in daily newspapers of temporal vacancies for the 2019 Supplementary Registration of Voters and the 2019 Presidential and National Assembly elections.
While the call has been warmly welcomed by the unemployed masses, the idea that this would include government employees has been received with hostility.
Jauch shared that in times when work is scarce and unemployment numbers are on the increase, opportunities like these such should be given to those who have nothing at all, provided that they meet basic competence.
“If there is new work, even if it is of a temporary nature, it must be made available to those without work instead of giving it to those who are already employed,” said Jauch.
He adds “this in my view, giving it to people who are already employed, can only be justified if there are certain skill requirements that only those who are employed meet.
But if it is basic work that can be done by unemployed graduates and other young people without work, then just as a social solidarity principle, this work should be given to the unemployed instead of giving it as an add-on to people who are already in jobs,” he said.
The ECN intends to employ over 15 000 employees for the election period on a budget unknown to The Patriot.
The commission is looking to employ regional co-ordinators, assistant co-ordinators, supervisors of registration, Regional logistics officers, Head office store assistants, Polling officials, Regional IT Technical Support Staff, IT Field Support Staff, Youth Ambassadors, Human Resource Administrators and Computer technicians.
Hefty daily remuneration packages have attracted many government officials in the past who subsequently put in leave to be excused from their permanent jobs to take on these temporary positions.
Recruits are paid N$100 daily while on training while personnel like regional co-ordinators are paid N$ 1152 as Fixed Daily Rate for Registration and days outside polling (Government Officials), and N$ 1728 Fixed Daily Rate for Polling. Non-government officials are paid slightly less.
“It is just a social principle that you give work to those who already do not have so that they can have an income and for me it is really mind blowing that this is not a given.
Common sense must tell you that. It does not solve the unemployment problem but it is at least a temporary relieve,” said the labour expert.
There are over 67 000 unemployed graduates of which some have Masters Degrees. Activist Dimbulukeni Nauyoma said it is time the ECN is challenged with its recruitment process, which in his view is not logical.
“These people will be getting double salaries.
You have high unemployment in the country but the ECN opts to take people from the government and overlook those that have nothing at all,” said Nauyoma.
He added “if need be, we can allow for a coordinator to be someone with experience but remember that they also at one stage came into the system without the knowledge.
They were trained so let the ECN do the same.”
Nauyoma said the youth expect the ECN to critically look at its recruitment criteria if it wishes to empower unemployed Namibians in any way.
“At least with a N$1400 per day, a young person will feed their family and uplift their social lifestyle with some sort of dignity.”
Attempts to get responses from the ECN proved futile as questions sent to the commission were not responded to.
The commission’s public relations officer Victoria Hango acknowledged receipt of the questions send to her office on Tuesday but did not respond to any. Calls and SMSes sent to her mobile phone to enquire were ignored.

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