A Turkish state-run agency has donated embroidery machines to the African kingdom of Eswatini, formerly known as Swaziland, to help them produce face masks to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Mehmet Akif Sekerci, the coordinator of the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) in South Africa, told Anadolu Agency they were contacted by Eswatini’s Ministry of Tinkhundla Administration and Development asking for embroidery machines to be distributed to their skills centers to produce face mask.

The machines handed over to the ministry will be distributed to Women in Development Training Centers which provide training skills such as basic sewing, food processing, business management and appropriate technology skills.

“The Ministry of Tinkhundla wishes to extend its appreciation for the assistance received from TIKA on behalf of the Government of Eswatini,” Majahodvwa Nkonde, Principal Community Development Officer said after receiving the machines. “The ministry will be more effective in carrying out its mandate of alleviating poverty and unemployment in communities, thus improving their livelihood.”

Nkonde said the machines will increase enrollment of those seeking skill development at the five training centers and will also improve the quality of products they produce.

“This will lead to the creation of more employment opportunities and entrepreneurial skills, thus effectively address the poverty and unemployment problems in the communities,” he added.

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