Msiska, Kan’gombe commend EIZ

Secretary to the Cabinet Dr Roland Msiska has commended the Engineering Institution for Zambia (EIZ) for introducing mentorship programmes for young engineering professionals.

Speaking when he officiated at the EIZ business meeting held in Lusaka at the Radisson Blu hotel recently, Dr Msiska said the issue of mentorship and coaching is a very important element in building the young generation.

“My hope is that the reason why you are speaking about coaching and mentorship is to shift young men and women who have just qualified to be competent through coaching and mentorship from senior professionals,” he said.

He said mentorship is something that is important not only to the engineering professionals but to all professionals in the country.

Dr Msiska went on to say that the country has too many people with qualifications but not competent.

“We have to admit that competence is key among our professionals and so we need to start looking at competence-based type of training and assessments where issue of coaching and mentoring becomes a very critical component,” he said.

He said the mentorship Programme will help move people from not just being qualified but to being competent engineering professionals who will then help develop the country.

The Secretary to the Cabinet urged the engineering professionals to look at the 7th National Development Plan because the economy cannot happen without industrialisation and value addition which is emphasised in the 7th National Development Plan.

Dr Msiska went on to say that though the country is 53 years old since independence, Zambia is still importing equipment that should be developed by local engineering professionals.

He further said these are the challenges that the profession should start addressing.

Dr Msiska went on to say that though the country is 53 years old since independence, Zambia is still importing equipment that should be developed by local engineering professionals.

He further said these are the challenges that the profession should start addressing.

He went on to say that the theme of discussion “Fostering Sustainable Economic Growth through Human Capital Development” will help come up with resolutions on what needs to be done with regards to stable human capital development because human capital is one of the critical determinants of sustainable growth.

“For growth to be sustainable there is need therefore to invest in human capital and skills because without properly designed deliberate human capital development programmes we cannot develop as a nation,” he said.

He further said any institution that is futuristic in thinking and planning should start with human capital development because as professionals what EIZ does should always be in the interest of serving the country, the people of Zambia and the society at large.

He said that it is clear that in today’s increasingly competitive world sustainable growth requires continuous improvement in productivity efficiency which in turn requires among other things sustained investment in human capital development.

“One of the ways we can attract foreign direct investment is by having competent qualified personnel because without such personnel it becomes a challenge,” he said.

He went on to say that Government and his office are always open to new engineering ideas and innovation that will help the country develop and have industries that will greatly contribute to the economy.

And speaking  at the business meeting held in Kitwe, Kitwe Mayor Eng. Christopher Kan’gombe said engineering professionals need to be in the forefront of finding solutions to challenges being faced by the country especially ones to do with energy, infrastructure development, industrialisation and insufficient numbers of competent and experienced human capital.

He said professionals need to help the government in the implementation of projects, programmes and overall development agenda for adopting best practices in various roles within the engineering fraternity.

“What we want is to see local and indigenous Zambia engineering professionals such as yourselves taking center stage in all aspects of the development agenda of this country in as far as engineering is concerned,” he said.

He said until engineering professionals take a lead in the various infrastructure projects currently taking shape in the country there won’t be increased job and wealth creation.

The mayor said there is need to help government to find ways to sustain the country’s human capital in the engineering fraternity for the nation to fully implement the mammoth task outlined in the 7th National Development Plan.

He further said that government remains committed in the construction of roads, hospitals, and schools among other infrastructural development projects which need professionals in order to have projects of high standards.

“This can only be achieved if our engineering professionals are effective and efficient as they operate ethically and have adequate skills and competencies necessary for tasks ahead,” he said.

He went on to say that there is need for mindset change towards work so as to have a reliable cadre of engineering professionals ready to undertake any national programme.

Eng. Kan’gombe also called on the institution to consider transforming engineering professionals’ attitude towards work as the mentorship Programme is being put in place.

And speaking at both meetings EIZ President Eng. George Sitali said EIZ has seen a big gap between learning institutions and the industry hence the initiative to introduce mentorship and coaching for young engineering professionals.

“This meeting is to discuss actionable ideas that will inform policy choices for fostering sustainable economic growth in Zambia through human capital development,” he said.

Eng. Sitali said this is to be achieved with the help of the senior engineering professionals who are fellows of the institution to offer mentorship to the young upcoming engineering professionals.

The two business meetings were held under the theme “Fostering sustainable economic growth through human capital development”.