Senators unanimous on second likelihood for younger electricians
Government Senator Ransford Braham wants the Department of Science, Energy and Technology (MSET) to offer young people a “second chance” to become electricians without CXC (Caribbean Examinations Council) certification under the Electricity Regulations (electrical work, registration and licensing).
In the debate on the regulations, which were finally unanimously approved by the Senators on Friday, Braham said the regulations must accommodate Jamaicans who fail at primary and secondary levels, but experts are sure to become competencies.
“If you didn’t do that well in school or couldn’t afford it, you’d be sent to learn a trade. This included carpentry, plumbing, woodwork and electrical work. When I look at the rules, I remember this situation. This is a very useful way of giving a second chance, especially to young men, ”noted Senator Braham.
He said his hope is that where regulations refer to an electrical installation certificate, it does not identify the institution from which the certificate should be obtained.
“I hope that a young man or woman who does not do well in the formal school system and appears to do well as an apprentice electrician can qualify through the HEART program, for example. So that even though they don’t have CXCs and O-Levels [General Certificate of Education ordinary level] and so on, and they really set out to do this … I trust the system is not operated to exclude those categories, ”he said.
“Second chances in Jamaica are sometimes not abundant, and this is a very good second chance opportunity for people who haven’t done well. I’m not trying to devalue the CXC, but it’s not the only way to determine proficiency. And I think I can be brave enough to say that a university degree isn’t the only way to determine competency, ”he argued.
“It has to mean, and it should mean, whoever you are, whoever your connections are, should be able to get into the system,” he added.
“I trust that it will be organized so that it will continue to be a source of income for a good number of Jamaicans and we will not make it difficult and exclusive and that it will continue to be a source for you to develop yours with can skills even if you didn’t start your life with the skills you would normally get from the secondary system, ”he explained.
The regulations were passed with the full support of both sides of the Senate. They are supposed to lead the law that has been waiting for regulations since 2015. The regulations were passed under Section 55 (1) of the Electricity Act 2015, which provides for the privatization of electrical inspection functions that were previously carried out exclusively by the government.
Kamina Johnson Smith, government senator for government affairs, said it would relieve the government of some operational aspects of performing physical inspections in the electrical industry while maintaining quality and standards through regulation.
She also noted that with just nine inspectors, the government has now been burdened with an average of 35,000 annual requests for lighting permits.
The rules were passed on October 27th in the House of Representatives under the direction of the current Minister for Science, Energy and Technology, Daryl Vaz.
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