Freedom Mutanda and Knowledge Mhlanga Post Correspondents
TIMES are hard for thousands of university graduates owing to unemployment but one has decided not to cry over that and set himself on a successful course of action using the land which has always been the footing of Zimbabwe’s economy.
He is Mr Respect Mlambo, of Chikore communal lands under Chief Musikavanhu and a politics and public management graduate from the Midlands State University.
He has beaten the unemployment by engaging in agro-business following unsuccessful efforts to acquire formal employment.
Mr Mlambo (25) is into productive farming projects that produce wide varieties of tomatoes, soya beans, sugar beans, maize, sweet potatoes, vegetables, fruit and tree nurseries for commercial purposes.
Mr Mlambo is using his father’s huge tract of fertile land that is located near the Nyaudongo River and to utilise the river as his source of irrigation for his projects.
He created a dam weir and uses long pipes to draw irrigation.
The project, which is largely labour intensive, has managed to employ other youths and to supply the local market with consumables such as tomatoes, beans, maize and sweet potatoes and is rewarding the youths in a huge way.
Mr Mlambo said unemployed graduates should strive to be creative.
“I have realised that there are several ways of making a living.
“Youths should not give up when they fail to get employed.
“Instead, they should strive to be their own masters and employ others. Failure to secure a formal job is not the end of the world.
“Youths should not lose hope and continuously moan over unemployment but instead, they should use their hands, work hard and become their own masters. Apart from farming, there are other avenues to explore such as fishing, carpentry and pottery that can be ventured into to make a living and youths should desist from over-relying on the government to offer jobs.
The dependence syndrome has affected many of us and let us refrain from laziness as hard work brings success and prosperity,” he said.
Through the projects, Mr Mlambo has managed to construct his six -roomed-house, to pay his employees, cater for his family’s needs and buy inputs and chemicals for his projects. He said the project has transformed his life and that of his family.
At the farm, Mr Mlambo does managerial work like planning, organising, coordinating and leading.
Currently Mr Mlambo has several tonnes of maize and soya beans in stock and nearly a hectare of tomatoes is ready for harvesting.
Mr Mlambo said that his vision is to see his agro-business grow and supplying the whole of Manicaland. His father Mr Pearson Mlambo is proud of his son.
“Respect has shown that one does not have to be employed to be successful. He started his project last year. At first, I thought he would not last but look where he is now. He is actually providing employment to some youths in our area and that is a commendable effort. I wish him well, but perhaps it would be ideal if he could beneficiate his agriculture produce,” he said.
Mr Mlambo’s worker Johane Gwabuya says his boss is considerate and hard working.