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OJT programme does not discriminate—Garcia
"The On-The-Job Training (OJT) Programme does not discriminate according to race, class, or religion."
This was the assurance by Education Minister Anthony Garcia who yesterday said there was no need to develop parameters via which OJT trainees would now be selected for schools across the country.
Garcia described the OJT Programme as an informal public service initiative which afforded people workplace experience and training.
He said it had nothing to do with a person's religion or ethnicity.
Garcia said "There are persons who are qualified who cannot get a job at the moment and the OJT Programme grants persons the opportunity to get some experience in the workplace."
Administered by the Ministry of Labour, Garcia said successful OJT applicants are presented with either a one-year or two-year contract, depending on the placement.
Asked if a person's race or religion is considered before being placed, Garcia emphatically replied "No."
He said, "If that is done, one can argue that there is discrimination on the basis of race or religion and placements have nothing to do with that."
Denying the placement of Nafisah Nakhid at Lakshmi Girls' Hindu College last Monday was a deliberate move designed to provoke or spite the head of the Sanatan Dharma Maha Sabha, Garcia said his ministry was not involved in the decision as to who would have been selected for placement.
Uncertain if Nakhid had been placed at another school up to yesterday, Garcia said the entire incident was unfortunate.
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