Government has snubbed a grouping of graduate interns who demanded an outright employment in the civil service after undergoing internship program for about two years.
The grouping has been threatening to organise demonstrations at the Ministry of Labour at Capital Hill in a bid to force the government to employ them with an argument that they have gained the much needed experience to deliver.
The grouping is also pushing for increment on their monthly allowance for the incoming new interns from current K80 000 per month to at least K150 000 arguing that Covid-19 has led to the doubling of transport fares and other amenities.
The interns are also pleading for fair treatment from their supervisors in various establishments saying majority of them have been mistreated when seeking knowledge and experience in their posted establishments.
However, Minister of Labour Ken Kandodo engaged the executive committee of the interns to iron out the issues but told them that laws do not provide for handpicking of employees in the civil service.
He told the interns that whenever government advertises for vacancies, they need to apply and compete with everyone else who applies so they can be employed on merit.
Kandodo also told the interns that it is impossible to employ all interns stressing that employment in the civil service is based on availability of resources which determines the number of people to be recruited at a particular time.
On resumption of the next internship program which was supposed to commence on the 3rd of this month, Kandodo told the interns that it has been shifted to 1 October 2020 explaining that because of Covid-19 pandemic, people are working on shifts and from home hence interns may not find mentors in the offices.
So far, according to Kandodo there are over 4000 interns that participated in the internship program.
Chairperson of the grouping Gerald Masebo said they were satisfied with the responses from the Ministry and they are looking forward to further dialogue in future.