Fifteen years as a bicycle mechanic

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As Malawi is undergoing a situation of high rates of unemployment, young people need to be encouraged to engage in self-employment.

However, there seems to be few businesspeople whose stories can inspire the youth to venture into business.

But those with technical skills can look to 37 year-old Binala Panisha who has now clocked 15 years as a bicycle mechanic, a job that seems to be less profitable among several Malawians.

Binala Panisha

Binala Panisha has made a living in bicycle repairing for fifteen years.

According to Binala Panisha, he began repairing bicycles when he was staying with his uncle in late 1980s.

“In the first place I was ignoring the job since it was not convincing me,” Panisha said.

The bike engineer proceeded by saying that he changed his mind when he realised the profits that his uncle was making per day.

“In early 1990s uncle was at least making a lot of money that was used to buy all needs at home, I then accepted the job upon seeing that it was profitable,” he said.

Panisha said that in 2010 he thought of going to South Africa to look for greener pastures to support his family and parents but now he is satisfied with the retains of his job.

“I had plans of going to South Africa to search for greener pastures, but now I am convinced since I can make K2500 a day.

“I am able to support my family and my parents from repairing people’s bicycles. I managed to build my house and of my parents,” Panisha said.

He urged youth that indeed in the country jobs are scarce but if they can employ themselves it can be at least better. He added that some jobs such as bicycle repairing and carpentry look unprofitable but if young can have skills on such jobs they can improve their living standards.

Panisha hails from Kalimanjira Village, Traditional Authority Malengachanzi in Nkhotakota.

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