In its mandate to address youth unemployment and encourage job creation, the Industrial Training Fund (ITF) in collaboration with the Edo State government has empowered at least 500 trainees in Edo state with skills and start-up packs for employability and entrepreneurship in their various vocation.
Speaking at the closing ceremony of the second phase of the National Industrial Skills Development Programme (NISDP) in Benin City Edo State recently, Director General, Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Sir Joseph Ari, said the essence of the programme is to sustain efforts towards equipping youths in Edo State with skills for employability and entrepreneurship.
Ari, who commended Edo State government for the collaboration, scored the Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, high for his laudable programmes on job creation as part of his “Edo jobs” initiatives that is targeted at providing 200,000 jobs in his first tenure.
He disclosed that the empowerment of youths is one of the initiative of the Industrial Training Fund to key into the present Federal Government’s policy of job and wealth creation.
Ari explained that the policy is aimed at ensuring that majority of our youths, a critical segment of our population are meaningfully engaged in the country through the NISDP programme.
“The reason of the Federal Government’s commitment to equipping Nigerians with technical skills is not far farfetched,” he said.
According to him, projections by the United Nations and other bodies indicated that Nigeria’s population will be a whopping 500 million come year 2050, making it the third most populous nation on earth.
He noted that countries like Brazil, Russia, India, China, Singapore and other industrialised economies of the world are so today because of their investment in skills acquisition.
“We must therefore as governments and as institutions do more in terms of skills acquisition if the country will join this ratified group.
“It is in recognition of this that we in the ITF, the leading agency responsible for the impartation of skills, have upped the ante,”Ari said.
He added that the 2017 NISDP has commenced across the 36 states and the FCT, and will train 300 Nigerians in 3 trades and crafts namely welding and fabrication, fashion and garment making as well as plumbing and piping.
On his part, the Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, who commended the idea of ITF, provided support for the graduands of the NISDP numbering over 500 with start- up packs, as well as promised them take-off capital to promote and encourage skills acquisition and entrepreneurship development.