In Zambia where unemployment is high and university graduates are staying home wasting their talents at home, one could suggest that perhaps the government should start looking at other sectors of the economy in order to create employment for the Zambian youths. Modelling is one such sector that can lessen the burden of unemployment on the Zambian youths, it can employ accountants, human resource, camera men and women, stylist and the list goes on.
It is not a secret that the Zambian modelling industry is relatively new and the society holds negative opinions on the young women who have chosen to take it up professionally, speaking on personal account, some models have stopped the job because boyfriends and family do not approve of their work, and of course society comes on to worsen the situation by calling these brave young women names and giving them labels.
ZambianMusic.net spoke to 23year old, Liyah Phiri a young model based in Lusaka, she is one of those young ladies that believe that the government should try and regulate the modelling industry because currently the wages and or salaries are not enough for them to earn a living. Liyah Phiri told says that she has been forced to become a part time model; she now models on part time basis, while she is a sales representative for a marketing agency based in Lusaka.
“Truth be told modelling industry in our country is not well recognized and appreciated, it is for this reason that a lot of models are under paid and some are even abused” said Liyah she believes that it is important for some models to have bodies that carter for all modelling activities, she also asked the government to work closely with these modelling agencies so as to ensure that the models are protected and the paid well, because these models work very hard and it is not easy for them to go out and do what they do. “they are under paid and taken for granted. Doing a job or an advert without giving them what rightly belongs to them” she added.
She has been modelling for as long she can remember, tracing her modelling to a tender age of , when she just in grade five, and she has taken part in many of her school and community pageants, “ I did my first national pageant in 2007, Miss youth Zambia and I was among the top 14 finalists. She also took part in Miss Unity Zambia 2015 and came out first runner up. She also took part in Miss Peace 2015 and she won the title. Liyah Phiri took part in Miss Heritage Zambia and she came out first runner up. She was later selected to represent Zambia at the Miss Tourism universe 2015 in Lebanon which ran from 29th august to 20th September and Miss Bikini World 2015 in Malta Europe which was held from 18th October till 25th October.
Close friends to Liyah told ZambianMusic.net that despite coming from a humble Christian background she is lucky because her family supports her career and her parents even encourage her to aim high and continue working hard, she said her pastor equally encourages her and very supportive in what she does. Liyah believes that modelling is an industry that can boost Zambia’s economy and of course create employment opportunities. I think it is time we as Zambian models to stand up and fight for what we believe is right.
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