Sunday, January 24, 2016

My Challenges in Congo:acute problem of skilled labor (2)

I discovered while in Congo when I began working for MNCOM that, for most people who came to work for Maurice Nguesso, a majority came to take as they told me: what their family or the ruling Nguesso family has taken or stolen from Congolese. In order words, most people never really came to work honestly. It also showed how Congolese hated the ruling Nguesso family. What the ordinary Congolese forgot in their general or collective hatred of the ruling family is that, the ruling Nguesso are not a homogenous set up. In that ruling family, there some good as well as bad ones or good as well as bad Nguessos and Maurice Nguesso, for all his short comings, were a “good Nguesso”. However what most Congolese also forgot was that, Maurice Nguesso was very different from other members of the ruling clan, whose fortune are directly attached or traced to the President of the Republic or had received favors because they belonged to the ruling clan. Maurice Nguesso is different from most Nguessos. He is a very hard working man and he had made his fortune even before his younger brother, Denis Sassou Nguesso came to power for the first time in 1979 and  for the second time in 1997 after a short but brutal civil war against the country’s only post independent democratically elected president, Professor Pascal Lissouba.  

To start the broadcasting wing of the private media group called MNCOM, Maurice Nguesso invested three hundred thousand Euros of his personal fortune. But for the entire amount invested to create MNTV/MN Radio, all Maurice Nguesso got were sub standard materials. The reality is that, he was hoodwinked by the very people he put in confidence and responsibility in them, as I had already mentioned above. Then, the icing on the cake that I had as challenge when I was hired from France to come and work for MNCOM was that of manpower. Ask any employer in Congo and he/she will conclude or tell you that, the country has an acute problem of skilled labor.  Even for menial jobs, there is a dearth in the country. There are many graduates with high sounding diplomas, but they are most often than not, not qualified enough because the standard of education has been destroyed by state sanctioned corruption. 30 years of Denis Sassou Nguesso and his ruling PCT in power has destroyed Congo’s educational system, just as it has done with any other sector.

This aspect will be developed later on. Congo is one of the countries in Africa that I know besides Gabon and Equatorial Guinea were most skilled labor are sourced either out of the continent especially from France and Lebanon or from neighboring countries such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Cameroon, Ghana, Nigeria , Senegal and Benin. As far as MNCOM was concern, a majority of staff recruited to work for MNTV/MN Radio were not trained journalists or technicians. Most could not even speak nor write French or even the national languages which are Lingala and Kituba. What happened was that, those recruiting brought in their family members and friends and Maurice Nguesso himself was not helpful. I was told that, Maurice Nguesso as the boss, made a lot of recommendations for people to be employed that were or could not be rejected even though they were not competent. 

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